Russian Sub Force: Mess Up Your Logs, Go To Prison!
Some "details" have emerged on the "cause" of the fire suppression system casualty on RFS Nerpa I posted about earlier. The Russians have charged one of the submarine's watchstanders with entering the wrong temperature data into the ship's environmental system:
The business daily said, quoting a source close to the investigation, that sailor Dmitry Grobov is suspected of having entered the wrong temperature data for the submarine's living quarters, which caused the fire safety system to release Freon gas.This is almost too stupid for words. Do the Russians expect people to believe that one incorrect data entry will cause an automated system to engage? Has no one ever heard of a temperature sensor failing high before? Who would design a system to automatically actuate based on one false reading? (OK, you nukes all know about one particular protective action that happens because of that, but we won't discuss that here. It couldn't kill anyone, anyway.) It's becoming apparent that the sub's fire suppression system was put together incorrectly, but the Russians are trying to deflect blame from the shipyard and/or the possible problems inherent in taking over 15 years to construct a submarine.
The source said that according to information obtained from the sub's Rotor data block, similar to an aircraft's black-box, "the temperature...increased sharply all of sudden and the fire safety system reacted as programmed."
The daily said that at the time of the incident Grobov was on a scheduled watch and the access code to the fire safety system was written in pencil on the surface of the equipment...
...However, former Navy officers have told the paper they doubt that Grobov was solely to blame as it is impossible for one person to activate the system, which is protected from unauthorized activation by multiple levels of confirmation...
...Investigators earlier announced that they had brought criminal charges against the crew member, and that he faced up to seven years in jail.
"Military investigators have determined the person who activated, without permission or any particular reason, a fire safety system on board the submarine. He is a sailor from the crew, and he has already confessed," Vladimir Markin, a spokesman for the Investigation Committee of the Prosecutor General's Office, said on November 13.