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Submarines Ask Putin to Get in the Nerpa Process

Submarines Ask Putin to Get in the Nerpa Process 16.08.2012
Text: Rg.ru
Photo: Visit of Vladimir Putin to Amur Shipyard in 2009. Deepstorm.ru
Pacific Fleet (PF) Court Martial tomorrow will continue hearing on the criminal case initiated four years ago after an accident in nuclear submarine Nerpa. Prior to that, submariners' club of Amur Shipyard addressed an open letter to Russian president Vladimir Putin, reports Rossiyskaya Gazeta.

In their letter, submarine fleet veterans ask the head of the state to get in the process and find persons guilty of the accident which had led to 20 deaths.

Submariners say in their letter:

"We are members of Amur Shipyard Submariners' Club, we used to build various kinds of submarines and used to serve in them. We know sailors of Pacific Fleet and have spent many days inside strength hull with them. And for us, it is a mystery to watch another circus show aimed to lock up excellent commanding officer of SSN Nerpa".

As for the veterans, "...looks like there were no Molibden-I control system designed by NPO Avrora which did fail many times. And what happened to those scoundrels who had mixed freon with toxic carbon dichloride?" they write.

According to the submariners' club chairman Anatoly Vasilenko, it is necessary to conduct new investigation. Employees of the shipyard ask the country's first person to intervene into the case.

Recall that PF Court Martial acquitted the sub's commander Dmitry Lavrentiev and petty officer Dmitry Grobov on Oct 14, 2011 on the basis of the earlier delivered jury's verdict. Investigation and legal proceedings took about 2.5 years. In May 2012, acquittal was canceled and the case was submitted for reconsideration by other judges.

The tragedy happened to SSN Nerpa in Nov 2008 during sea trials. As a result of unauthorized activation of fire-smothering system, freon gas entered the sub's compartments. As was found out later, the fire suppressant contained toxic admixtures. Twenty men died, other 21 were intoxicated. Totally, there were 208 men onboard the submarine.

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