A Royal Navy nuclear submarine was involved in what has been called a ‘close quarters incident’ with a ferry in the Irish Sea.
An investigation has been launched into the as of this week unreported incident, which occurred in the Irish Sea on November the 6th.
The incident involved the MS Stena Superfast VII, a ferry owned by Stena Line and operated on their service between Belfast and Cairnryan. The vessel is capable of transporting 1,200 passengers and 661 cars.
The Royal Navy has not confirmed which of its submarines was involved.
The Marine Accident Investigation Branch (MAIB) said in a release:
“In November, we were notified of a close-quarters incident between the ro-ro (roll-on/roll-off) ferry Stena Superfast VII and a submarine operating at periscope depth.
We have carried out a preliminary assessment of the evidence in this case and the Chief Inspector of Marine Accidents has decided to open a safety investigation. The investigation is being conducted with the full co-operation of the Royal Navy.
A report will be published when our investigation has concluded.”
A Royal Navy spokesman said:
“We can confirm the sighting of a Royal Navy submarine between Belfast and Stranraer on 6 November 2018. We are co-operating with the MAIB investigation.”
According to a spokesman for Stena:
“Stena Line can confirm that on Tuesday 6 November 2018, Stena Superfast VII and a submerged submarine came into close proximity during a scheduled crossing between Cairnryan and Belfast. At no stage were the vessel, passengers or crew in any danger. The incident is now under investigation by the Marine Accident Investigation Branch and we will of course co-operate fully in this.”