The propeller shaft of HMS Prince of Wales had not been properly greased, naval sources told the outlet
Human error may have led to the breakdown of Britain’s new aircraft carrier HMS Prince of Wales on Saturday, The Telegraph reported on Tuesday, citing unnamed sources.
According to the article, naval officials who inspected the warship reached a preliminary conclusion regarding the cause of the incident, during which the vessel came to rest off the Isle of Wight.
“The propeller shaft may have been damaged by lack of lubrication,“, reports the media, citing its sources. The newspaper went on to claim that the vital part could have been damaged by overheating caused by friction.
According to The Telegraph, the aircraft carrier may have to spend some time in dry dock for a thorough inspection and repairs, with a senior defense source saying that all “extensive damage to starboard shaft“would turn out to be a”big problem to solve.”
Rear Admiral Steve Moorhouse, director of Force Generation, which is responsible for ensuring Royal Navy ships are ready to deploy, acknowledged in a video statement that the Prince of Wales may not be ready in time to cross the Atlantic to participate in planned exercises with the US Navy, the Royal Canadian Navy and the US Marine Corps.
“After initial assessment, it is likely that the failure will require repairs that may impact the ship’s schedule,“said the official.
Commenting on theemerging mechanical problemwhich happened to the warship just hours after it left for military exercises on August 27, former First Sea Lord Admiral Lord West described the situation as “extremely unhappy” And one “embarrassmentto Brittany.
West told the media that “you would think that when they were doing trials they could have spotted” that the propeller shaft had not been properly lubricated.
HMS Prince of Wales became fully operational last year, needing £3.3million in repairs after a previous incident in 2020 saw water wreaking havoc on her electronics in the engine room.
During her two-year life, the warship spent a total of 87 days at sea.
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