Department of National Defence

Department of National Defence

November 17, 2009 10:01 ET

Terra Nova and Gatineau to Make Final Departure

DARTMOUTH, NOVA SCOTIA--(Marketwire - Nov. 17, 2009) - On November 17, 2009 the decommissioned destroyer-escort Gatineau will be towed to Pictou, Nova Scotia, where the final stages of disposal will take place. The Terra Nova is scheduled to follow on November 20, 2009. Both tow dates are weather dependent and subject to change.

A contract for the removal and dismantling of the destroyer-escorts was awarded to AECON FABCO on October 21, 2009, and is valued at approximately $4.2 million. The survey of the two decommissioned destroyer-escorts conducted by AECON FABCO progressed ahead of schedule, allowing the ships to be removed from Dartmouth earlier then anticipated.

"We are committed to the responsible disposal of our decommissioned ships," said the Honourable Peter MacKay, the Minister of National Defence and the Minister for the Atlantic Gateway. "This is a great undertaking that will benefit the local shipbuilding and repair industry."

The two destroyer-escorts will be removed and towed one at a time by tug boat. The final destroyer-escort, Terra Nova, is scheduled to arrive in Pictou by November 22, 2009. It is anticipated that the destroyer-escorts will be fully dismantled by fall 2010 and disposed of in accordance with all national and provincial regulations.

Gatineau is a Restigouche-class destroyer-escort that served from 1959 - 1996. She was the second vessel to be commissioned as HMCS Gatineau and also held two battle honours from her namesake ship, which included the Atlantic 1943-44 and Normandy 1944. She also had the opportunity to offer a 21 gun salute to Queen Elizabeth II and President Dwight Eisenhower on June 26, 1956 for the official opening of the St. Lawrence Seaway. Gatineau was decommissioned from active service in May 1996.

Terra Nova is also a Restigouche-class destroyer-escort that served from 1959 - 1997. One of her most recognized contributions was her deployment with Operation FRICTION, the Canadian Forces contribution to Operation DESERT STORM (the Gulf War) in 1990. Along with the other ships in the Canadian Naval Task Group, Terra Nova undertook escort duties for hospital ships and other vulnerable coalition naval vessels. Terra Nova was decommissioned from active service in July 1997.

Note to Editor: To facilitate a photo opportunity, please contact the Maritime Forces Atlantic (MARLANT) Public Affairs office at (902) 427-3766.

For more information regarding the disposal of these ships, please call our Media Liaison Office at 1-866-377-0811 or (613) 996-2353.

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