View Full Version : Navy probes 'mutinous' damage to patrol vessel

11th December 2004, 17:54
Navy probes 'mutinous' damage to patrol vessel

11th December 2004
Ralph Riegel

THREE Naval personnel are the focus of a military police investigation amid suggestions of near-mutinous behaviour on a Navy vessel. The Naval Service last night confirmed that a full investigation is under way into two incidents on board the fisheries patrol ship, the LE Emer.

In one incident, a security key disappeared without trace from the Emer - while, in a second more serious incident, someone apparently drained all the oil from a header tank that supplies the ship's capstan equipment.

This equipment is integral to the operation of the ship's anchor and its various ropes and pulleys.

Without the oil, the equipment could not operate - and the anchor could not be mechanically lowered or lifted.

While a vessel can operate without capstan equipment, it would render the use of its anchor extremely difficult.

One Navy source said the incidents were viewed extremely seriously given that, if deliberate, they could have had major implications for the operational capability of the patrol vessel.

A Naval Service spokesman indicated yesterday that no reasonable explanation for the leak of the oil could be found following a full engineering examination of the implement.

A military probe is underway to determine if, as is feared possible, someone deliberately sabotaged the equipment by draining the oil off.

However, the Navy said it was possible the incident might have been caused by an accident.

Navy officials said that the disappearence of the oil was discovered due to the diligence of the Emer's command officers - and did not pose an operational threat to the vessel at the time.

Military police are also trying to determine whether the disappearence of the security key was due to simple negligence or to a more sinister motive.

Both incidents were discovered over the past three weeks - and the military police probe is expected to be concluded by Christmas.

The investigation was sparked by the suspicion that the occurrence of the two incidents in such a short space of time may be more than coincidental.

The Navy denied suggestions that three personnel had been suspended - but said a number of individuals are now assisting the military police with their inquiry.

The Emer is currently docked at Haulbowline Naval Base in Cork and everyone connected with the ship, from crew members to officers and maintenance staff, is set to be interviewed by military police to determine precisely what occurred.

A report on the matter will be submitted to the Naval Service chiefs who will then determine what further action, if any, is to be taken.

The incidents occurred at one of the busiest times for the Naval Service which is operating exhaustive fishery protection patrols as well as offering support for the numerous marine rescue operations which occur over the winter.

Goldie fish
12th December 2004, 01:20
The daily mirror is running an article about alledged sabotage on the emer. Seemly one of the capstans was drained of oil.military police are investigating...also some thing about somebody swiping some keys of a secure area. maybe nobody wants to go to sea in her anymore because she is falling a part......

sorry murf..someone lost the original post during the downtime...im not going to say it was boomer...

12th December 2004, 19:45
She is due for replacement on or before 2007. Hopefully its sooner rather than later

12th December 2004, 21:28
sorry murf..someone lost the original post during the downtime...im not going to say it was boomer...

Well Cheers Goldie :)

Blame the fact that two ppl attempted to approve at the same time :)

13th December 2004, 20:01
In one incident, a security key disappeared without trace from the Emer ....

Caine Mutiny anyone?

13th December 2004, 20:29
yeah same old thing if murf posts news ..its not news until it has been corroborated by at least five others.

Some body is making a very serious statement here regarding going to sea in this vessel

Why bother only drain one capstan there are two?

There are far more effective ways of preventing a ship going to sea.....why do something so trivial?

Did some body draw the PAs a picture of a capstan to show them what it was?

Did some body give the PAS a picture of a ship to show them that we have a navy?

13th December 2004, 20:48
Did Naval personnel not attend a provost course during the year so they could do their own MP stuff?

Vice Admiral
13th December 2004, 21:11
The NS has it's own PA's for some time now.
I don't think the attempts at 'grounding' the ship are a statement of disatisfaction with her seaworthiness.

Goldie fish
15th December 2004, 09:11
This was discussed at some length on a Cork Radio station yesterday morning. It appears the curse of bullying may have raised its head in Haulbowline too.

19th December 2004, 23:07
Bullying in haulbowline....never :biggrin:

31st January 2005, 15:03
108. Mr. M. Higgins asked the Minister for Defence the details of the military police investigation into suggestions of two incidents of near mutinous behaviour on a Naval Service vessel; if these investigations involve allegations of sabotage on board the vessel; if the military investigation is concluded; the conclusions that have been reached from this investigation and if action has subsequently been taken; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [1500/05]

Minister for Defence (Mr. O’Dea): The military authorities advise that as a result of a number of alleged incidents on board a Naval Service vessel in November-December 2004, two Military Police investigations were initiated. One of these investigations concluded on 20 December 2004 and a report was submitted to the Flag Officer Commanding Naval Service on 22 December 2004 for consideration. The appropriate disciplinary procedures have now been initiated by the military authorities in relation to the matter reported on by the Military Police and due process will now take its course. In the circumstances, it would be inappropriate to comment further on the matter.

The Military Police investigation into the second alleged incident is still ongoing and therefore it would be inappropriate to comment on the matter.

Goldie fish
10th February 2005, 22:37
IOS reported that the individuals involved have been reprimanded in relation to the Draining of oil in the Capstan,though it was said that at no time was the safety of the ship in question.

Goldie fish
11th February 2005, 19:55
Thanks to Ken Foxe for providing me with this article to post here....

Echoes of Bounty mutiny in Emer crew's unrest - By KEN FOXE

LONG HOURS, bullying of crewmen and cramped quarters all sparked the most famous mutiny in history – on board HMS Bounty in the Pacific Ocean in 1789.
So it is probably no coincidence that allegations of similar unfair treatment have surfaced during an official investigation into misbehaviour of much more recent vintage, on fisheries patrol vessel LE Emer, in Irish waters at Christmas 2004.
Naval services sources allege that tensions on the ship, the oldest in the Irish fleet, had reached boiling point in the run-up to the festive season and that there was a bitter row over working hours and allegations of bullying.
Three separate investigations were ordered into events on the ship, including the alleged sabotage of an engine and the disappearance of a key.
However, the only inquiry to be completed so far – into the draining of oil from an engine – failed to find any evidence of deliberate wrongdoing. The men involved escaped with a rap over the knuckles after a military police investigation.
The two men were told their behaviour was 'negligent' after the oil tank, used in the operation of the ship's anchor, was not refilled after being completely drained. A second investigation into the apparently linked disappearance of a security key is ongoing.
All personnel on board the vessel were interviewed in the course of the inquiries.
The oil tank incident was taken seriously by authorities because technical examinations found it could not have leaked and it presented a possible safety issue.
However the absence of oil would most likely not have put the vessel at risk – the motor involved, one of two – is used for hauling up anchors.
A Naval Service source said: 'At the time, morale was low because people felt they were being asked to do too much in the run-up to Christmas and over that period.
'There were accusations of favouritism, and relations with the top brass weren't good. There were also suggestions of bullying, which are being looked at separately.' The 1,000-tonne L… Emer, armed with a 40mm Bofors and two GAM-B01 20mm cannon, is used for fishery patrols and also in the interception of boats involved in drug smuggling. She has a crew of 41 sailors and five officers and has been in service with the Naval Service since 1978.
Naval Service sources said that the Emer was reaching the end of her service and there were plans to replace the boat in 2007.
The source said: 'Conditions on board would not be as good as some of the other vessels and that only exacerbated the problems. There was a feeling that the authorities were dragging their heels on its replacement.' A statement from the Department of Defence said: 'The military authorities advise that as a result of a number of alleged incidents on board a Naval Service vessel in November [and] December 2004, two military police investigations were initiated.
'The appropriate disciplinary procedures have now been initiated by the military authorities in relation to the matter reported on by the military police and due process will now take its course,' the statement concluded

Big Al
27th April 2005, 15:31
Mr. Broughan asked the Minister for Defence , further to his response of 1 March 2005, if the second of two military police investigations into suggestions of near mutinous behaviour on a Naval Service vessel has been concluded; the action that has been taken in view of this investigation; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [12349/05]

Minister for Defence (Mr. O’Dea): The second Military Police investigation into alleged incidents onboard a Naval Service vessel was concluded on 28 February 2005. The military authorities advise that there was insufficient evidence to provide a basis for further action.