Go Back  PPRuNe Forums > Aircrew Forums > Military Aviation
Reload this Page >

U.K. Nuclear accidents and incidents

Military Aviation A forum for the professionals who fly military hardware. Also for the backroom boys and girls who support the flying and maintain the equipment, and without whom nothing would ever leave the ground. All armies, navies and air forces of the world equally welcome here.

U.K. Nuclear accidents and incidents

Old 6th Jun 2023, 21:51
  #21 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Richard Burtonville, South Wales.
Posts: 2,349
Received 100 Likes on 59 Posts
Originally Posted by NutLoose
None nukes, the VC10 was tasked with a replenishment flight to RAFG carrying 1000 pounders etc.
As the crew were going through their start up checks the young loadmaster arrived at the cockpit with a fistful of remove before flight safety pins asking where they were suppose to stow them…. Yup you have guessed it, all removed from the bombs stowed in the cabin… flight cancelled, loady briefed on the safety pins and armourers despatched to make the load safe again..
All the brightest young loadies were sent to Pumas!

CG
charliegolf is offline  
Old 6th Jun 2023, 23:25
  #22 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: Scotland
Posts: 26
Likes: 0
Received 2 Likes on 2 Posts
Much of the Vanguard SSBN stuff in that document is based on the fantasy findings of one very mixed up trainee. I was on bombers at the same time William Mc-Naive-ly went through. We all saw his full revelations and reports…(after his massive experience as a trainee SMQ on his first qualifying patrol) and laughed at them. The kid really thought he was onto something. Turns out he was a bit of a fantasist. His writing references Superman and Kryptonite ffs! As for the CB8890…he was a missile weirdo and was expected to know the book back to front. Everyone on the boat was invited to read it as we were tested on the thing every year. As for not reacting to a possible fire, due to everyone thinking it was another FOST fire on workup is utter bull.

Last edited by Chrisbowe82; 7th Jun 2023 at 11:12.
Chrisbowe82 is offline  
Old 6th Jun 2023, 23:28
  #23 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: The Alps
Posts: 3,209
Received 125 Likes on 62 Posts
Originally Posted by chevvron
They always put up a Puma out of Odiham (about 10 miles south of Burghfield) to 'shadow' these SST movements or alternatively keep one on 'standby' duty.
Whenever there was an 'exercise' deploying GLCMs out of Greenham Common, it seemed the Army Air Corps would cover the task.
Occasionally a SK (not the bright yellow ones!) would also carry out riding shotgun duties, as I found out during random chatter with a former RAF officer during a defence exhibition.

cheers
chopper2004 is online now  
Old 6th Jun 2023, 23:36
  #24 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Feb 2006
Location: The Alps
Posts: 3,209
Received 125 Likes on 62 Posts
Originally Posted by NutLoose
They did do a nuke shuffle on the way to the Falklands I believe, see

https://falklandstimeline.files.word...task-force.pdf
Hmm, thought they would be removed before setting sail from Portsmouth...

Brings me to another point of events a decade or so earlier, with the Tonkin Gulf Yacht Club and the USS Forestal accident

https://www.history.com/this-day-in-...rcraft-carrier

I wonder if the USN did the same and had their bucket of sunshine swiftly removed at say Subic Bay before entering the war..

cheers
chopper2004 is online now  
The following users liked this post:
Old 7th Jun 2023, 00:45
  #25 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: A better place.
Posts: 2,326
Received 26 Likes on 18 Posts
Originally Posted by NutLoose
They did do a nuke shuffle on the way to the Falklands I believe, see

https://falklandstimeline.files.word...task-force.pdf
So, I'm reading this right - nuclear depth charges were on board vessels with deep magazines as they fought during the Falklands War?
Honestly, this conflict gets more extraordinary the more you learn about it...
tartare is offline  
Old 7th Jun 2023, 05:42
  #26 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: May 2002
Location: Scotland
Posts: 836
Received 119 Likes on 53 Posts
Originally Posted by tartare
So, I'm reading this right - nuclear depth charges were on board vessels with deep magazines as they fought during the Falklands War?
Honestly, this conflict gets more extraordinary the more you learn about it...
No, I don’t think you are. The weapons were transferred off the combatant ships before the shooting began or before they arrived in the area.
Timelord is offline  
The following 2 users liked this post by Timelord:
Old 7th Jun 2023, 08:22
  #27 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Dec 2004
Location: Beyond the Blue Horizon
Posts: 54
Likes: 0
Received 0 Likes on 0 Posts
Originally Posted by chopper2004
Hmm, thought they would be removed before setting sail from Portsmouth...

I wonder if the USN did the same and had their bucket of sunshine swiftly removed at say Subic Bay before entering the war..

cheers
USN carriers were stuffed with nukes off Vietnam and conducted loading drills with live weapons between the war zone and Japan. They even lost one overboard in December 1965: https://www.casematepublishing.co.uk/broken-arrow.html

JT
JT Eagle is offline  
Old 7th Jun 2023, 10:48
  #28 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Aug 2015
Location: Gerloz
Posts: 875
Received 27 Likes on 14 Posts
Originally Posted by Timelord
No, I don’t think you are. The weapons were transferred off the combatant ships before the shooting began or before they arrived in the area.

Disembarassed is the phrase. Very often transferred to Royal Fleet Auxiliary vessels and
sent home. Several contentious issues were raised however; RFA vessels berthing in Talcuahano in Chile caused a bit of a stir, although the Chileans let it pass as they were suddenly out best friends. And transiting the Panama Canal; we got away with it. !!
MENELAUS is offline  
Old 7th Jun 2023, 11:42
  #29 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Apr 2020
Location: Rhone-Alpes
Posts: 1,232
Received 349 Likes on 193 Posts
Originally Posted by MENELAUS
Disembarassed is the phrase. Very often transferred to Royal Fleet Auxiliary vessels and
sent home. Several contentious issues were raised however; RFA vessels berthing in Talcuahano in Chile caused a bit of a stir, although the Chileans let it pass as they were suddenly out best friends. And transiting the Panama Canal; we got away with it. !!
Since I can't believe it would have been announced, are vessels required to state "no nukes" when using these facilities ?
Tartiflette Fan is online now  
Old 7th Jun 2023, 11:44
  #30 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Glorious Devon
Posts: 2,829
Received 1,502 Likes on 907 Posts
Originally Posted by Tartiflette Fan
Since I can't believe it would have been announced, are vessels required to state "no nukes" when using these facilities ?
Don't ask, don't tell. SOP is to neither confirm nor deny.
Ninthace is online now  
The following users liked this post:
Old 7th Jun 2023, 11:59
  #31 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Aug 2015
Location: Gerloz
Posts: 875
Received 27 Likes on 14 Posts
Originally Posted by Ninthace
Don't ask, don't tell. SOP is to neither confirm nor deny.

Nor can we confirm nor deny that a weapon (training however depleted uranium and tritium round ) was dropped down the aft lift on Hermes. !! 😉
After the chockheads had had a field day hosing it down and bagging the ensuing sludge the Brains’ trust from Aldermaston arrived and went absolutely harpic. Allegedly.
MENELAUS is offline  
Old 8th Jun 2023, 16:10
  #32 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: 350/3 Compton
Age: 76
Posts: 815
Received 467 Likes on 111 Posts
Originally Posted by Timelord
No, I don’t think you are. The weapons were transferred off the combatant ships before the shooting began or before they arrived in the area.
Yup, watched them come back on the way home. Wondered why I got “the stare” from Wings when I innocently said “Oh, what are those boxes?”

Mog
Mogwi is offline  
Old 9th Jun 2023, 01:26
  #33 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: A better place.
Posts: 2,326
Received 26 Likes on 18 Posts
Originally Posted by Timelord
No, I don’t think you are. The weapons were transferred off the combatant ships before the shooting began or before they arrived in the area.
Ah - my mistake - noted.
Although not strictly an `accident' and not aviation related - am reminded of the extraordinary story in the book The Silent Deep.
RN nuclear sub Captain climbs into inspection tunnel over reactor on submerged sub, and looks down through viewport into reactor chamber to see that it is almost entirely filled to the brim with sea-water!
Not just the cooling circuit - the whole chamber.
Reactor continuing to operate despite this - testimony to RR PWR engineering.
Trying to find the name of the vessel...
tartare is offline  
Old 9th Jun 2023, 05:34
  #34 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
Location: England
Posts: 29
Likes: 0
Received 2 Likes on 2 Posts
CND used to kindly leave directions on the M4 for the drivers so they did not miss the turn off to Burghfield.
mikeoneflying is offline  
Old 9th Jun 2023, 07:05
  #35 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Aug 2015
Location: Gerloz
Posts: 875
Received 27 Likes on 14 Posts
Originally Posted by tartare
Ah - my mistake - noted.
Although not strictly an `accident' and not aviation related - am reminded of the extraordinary story in the book The Silent Deep.
RN nuclear sub Captain climbs into inspection tunnel over reactor on submerged sub, and looks down through viewport into reactor chamber to see that it is almost entirely filled to the brim with sea-water!
Not just the cooling circuit - the whole chamber.
Reactor continuing to operate despite this - testimony to RR PWR engineering.
Trying to find the name of the vessel...
Yes extraordinary indeed. So extraordinary it sounds like bollocks.


Reactor ( kettle ). No tunnels anywhere. Although there is a separate access. The opening of which notified Burghfield /Aldermaston immediately. Interesting aside, also the venue for Sunday service.
MENELAUS is offline  
Old 9th Jun 2023, 07:07
  #36 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Aug 2015
Location: Gerloz
Posts: 875
Received 27 Likes on 14 Posts

Our Russki friends. With their superior attitude to Elf and Safety. And their superior control rods.

What RADHAZ ?
MENELAUS is offline  
Old 9th Jun 2023, 07:11
  #37 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Aug 2015
Location: Gerloz
Posts: 875
Received 27 Likes on 14 Posts

Final drift, Typhoon class bagna, sauna and recreation area. Water an interesting shade of green. Hopefully not connected to the feed water.
MENELAUS is offline  
The following users liked this post:
Old 9th Jun 2023, 09:05
  #38 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: A better place.
Posts: 2,326
Received 26 Likes on 18 Posts
Originally Posted by MENELAUS
Yes extraordinary indeed. So extraordinary it sounds like bollocks.


Reactor ( kettle ). No tunnels anywhere. Although there is a separate access. The opening of which notified Burghfield /Aldermaston immediately. Interesting aside, also the venue for Sunday service.
My friend - it is not bollocks.
I will believe Peter Hennessy and James Jinks over you any day of the week.
The book is excellent, and meticulously researched.
You should read it.
I'm now going to go and find the exact anecdote...

EDIT: Page 335 - The boat was HMS Valiant in 1977.
And the quote, from the late Vice-Admiral Sir John Coward KCB, DSO - who was Captain at the time.

"Coward went back to the reinforced tunnel over the top of the reactor compartment in the bottom of which was a glass window that could be used to see into the unmanned reactor compartment.
'It looked like a huge cathedral of machinery, brightly lit, lovely and quiet, but you can't get in it because of the radiation,' recalled Coward.
`But we couldn't see any of that because five feet below the window was the shimmering surface of the Mediterranean.
We had embarked god knows how many hundred tons of seawater into the reactor compartment.'
A salt water services pipe situated in the reactor compartment had fractured, causing sea water to flood into the compartment..."

Page 357 "...the fact that Valiant had continued to operate while under such conditions was a testament to the designers of the PWR1 nuclear reactor... `...it was so well constructed, so well insulated and so well clad that it didn't mind running in seawater, ' said Coward.

Separately accounted here https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HMS_Valiant_(S102)

Again, I would highly recommend this excellent book.
The access the authors got in writing it is amazing - on board during a Perisher course for example.
They also capture in meticulous detail the geopolitics of the UK trying to convince Rickover to share nuclear secrets.
That puts AUKUS in perspective...

Last edited by tartare; 9th Jun 2023 at 09:30.
tartare is offline  
The following users liked this post:
Old 9th Jun 2023, 11:33
  #39 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Glorious Devon
Posts: 2,829
Received 1,502 Likes on 907 Posts
IIRC, austenitic stainless steel is used in the construction of the PWR and the primary loop. Austenitic stainless steel is vulnerable to stress corrosion in the presence of chloride ions. There are a lot of chloride ions in sea water.
Ninthace is online now  
Old 9th Jun 2023, 12:12
  #40 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Apr 2020
Location: Hampshire
Posts: 1,375
Received 149 Likes on 94 Posts
MENALAUS's image is of the reactor service compartment aka the 'Tunnel' of HMS Sceptre, and I would take the late VAdm Coward at his word (as long as it wasn't about aircraft recognition ). So not a tunnel as might be imagined - assuming the Valiant's RSC was similar in layout to the Swiftsures'. Only ever invited onboard an O-boat so no personal experience of SSNs.
SLXOwft is offline  

Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service

Copyright © 2024 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.