Type 45 Destroyer HMS Dragon was due to dock in Cardiff on Friday but it has been reported that “propulsion problems” mean the ship cannot travel.
A Royal Navy spokesman said:
“Dragon has unfortunately had a propulsion problem which unfortunately means she won’t be able to get into Cardiff, though we have tried everything to get her there. It’s just one of those things that happen. No one knew when she was going to break down.
It’s just unfortunate timing. We did our best to try and put it right but we can’t. The operational capacity of the ship has to come first. It’s regrettable she has had to pull out because a lot of people were looking forward to seeing the Dragon.”
Many news media outlets have reported the engineering problems with the Royal Navy’s warships, the Type 45’s. The papers say that the ships will have to be refitted at a cost of tens of millions of pounds because they keep breaking down.
Problems with the Type 45 destroyer’s specially-built advanced generators have plagued the ships since they were first commissioned in 2009.
The Ministry of Defence had this to say:
“In our defence review last year we committed to improving the Type 45’s power and propulsion system through a series of machinery upgrades during planned maintenance, which will ensure increased availability and resilience over the life of the ships.”
The six ships which cost the taxpayer £1bn each are among the most advanced destroyers in the world. While a remedy is being worked on and the vessels will eventually be problem free, this will not be for a few years yet.