ESQUIMALT, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwired - March 1, 2014) - Department of National Defence / Royal Canadian Navy
This is the latest information regarding Her Majesty's Canadian Ship (HMCS) Protecteur. The ship remains stopped 340 nautical miles North East of Hawaii. During the morning of March 1, United States Ship (USS) Chosin reached HMCS Protecteur and commenced transferring additional relief supplies to HMCS Protecteur using USS Chosin's helicopter. A helicopter then began transferring family members who were on HMCS Protecteur to USS Michael Murphy, where they will sail safely to Pearl Harbour.
Over the next 24 hours it is anticipated that HMCS Protecteur will be taken under tow by the USS Chosin and start her transit back to Pearl Harbour. Once in Hawaii, efforts will commence to prepare Protecteur for her return to Esquimalt. We remain in very close contact with the Protecteur family members.
The Royal Canadian Navy is very appreciative of the tremendous support that has been provided by the USN and United Stated Coast Guard throughout this very difficult situation. It is yet another example of the strong relationship and interoperability that exists between our navies.
- The fire in HMCS Protecteur is completely extinguished.
- The 20 personnel on board HMCS Protecteur who received minor injuries have been treated and most have returned to regular duties. The state of their health continues to be monitored by the ship's medical staff.
- Yesterday at 3 p.m. PST, USS Michael Murphy arrived at HMCS Protecteur's location and provided relief supplies including water. The USN warship attempted to take Protecteur under tow but weather conditions, specifically high winds, hampered those efforts. The Michael Murphy remained on scene with HMCS Protecteur overnight.
- The weather conditions in the area are predicted to deteriorate further over the next 24 hours but should improve overnight on Sunday.
- Fleet Ocean tug USNS Sioux is also heading towards Protecteur to assist in the towing operations if necessary.
- HMCS Protecteur has limited electrical power and onboard systems are being reactivated in a controlled manner. The ships company is well and focused on recovery operations in the ship and rest. Ongoing medical and support services are being provided to all onboard.
- There are reports of significant fire and heat damage to the ship's engine room and considerable heat and smoke damage in surrounding compartments. An extensive and detailed damage assessment will be commenced once the ship arrives in Hawaii. An investigation into the cause of the fire is also being initiated.