Keeping the blogosphere posted on the goings on of the world of submarines since late 2004... and mocking and belittling general foolishness wherever it may be found. Idaho's first and foremost submarine blog. (If you don't like something on this blog, please E-mail me; don't call me at home.)

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Kazakhstani News -- News You Can Trust?

Every morning, I look for news about submarines on the web; usually, if there's something important that's happened, there will be several stories from various news sources. Sometimes, though, there's something that's only single sourced, so I have to decide if it's likely true and worth the time to blog about it. Normally, I'll type up the post as I'm researching.

Today was such a day. My quick Google search had one article from Kazinform, which is some sort of news agency (or maybe just a web site) serving Kazakhstan, about an accident in a Japanese shipyard on one of their Japan's new Soryu-class submarines where 5 people were hurt. The article says that Kazinform got the report from ITAR-TASS; however, that Russian news agency doesn't have anything on their English-language website yet. Nor was there any mention in a Japanese news website. So, I'm left with the decision -- do I let my readers know about a potential submarine news item of interest, or do I not waste their time?

As it turns out, my blogging ended up being driven by the realization that I have to leave for work in 15 minutes. The bottom line -- some people may or may not have been hurt in a Japanese shipyard working on a submarine. If so, I hope they're OK. The Sub Report will have any updated information probably way before I do.

Update 1819 10 July: Edited the 2nd paragraph above to correct an unfortunate pronoun inconsistency. It looks like, in this case, the Kazakhstani news source was correct; here's confirmation of the incident from a Japanese paper. Apparently, 5 shipyard workers were shocked during a battery test.
Five shipyard workers were treated for burns Wednesday after receiving an electric shock while working inside a submarine docked at a pier in Hyogo Ward, Kobe, police said.
The five employees of Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd.'s Kobe Shipyard and Machinery Works were in a machinery room of the Maritime Self-Defense Force submarine Soryu when the incident occurred at about 7:20 a.m.
They were sent to hospital to receive treatment for burns to their faces and hands...
...According to the police and the shipyard, a series of electrical battery tests that commenced on Tuesday night was still under way in the machinery room at the time of the incident. One of the five workers mishandled a cable carrying a 500-volt current, causing a battery to release an atmospheric discharge that inflicted an electric shock on all five workers.


Blogger Diogenes said...

What?? Kazakhstan has a navy?? With submarines??

7/09/2008 8:23 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Nothing on the Russian language ITAR-TASS yet, either.

7/09/2008 8:39 AM

Blogger Diogenes said...

OK - googled Kazakhstan Navy and discovered that they just "reconstituted" the force in 2003. They're landlocked save about 1,900 km of coast on the Caspian Sea(ignoring the much smaller Aral). I understand the need for coastal defense in their situation, but I don't get the need for submarines. The Caspian is fairly shallow(avg. 600 ft.) and, while the Soryu class is a fairly small boat, it just doesn't seem that it would be very effective in this sort of confined space.

Besides the political need to be a "big fish in a small pond", what's the motivation here?

7/09/2008 8:41 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Man..... I sure hope Captain BORAT was ok.

7/09/2008 10:04 AM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

In other news:

Did the EM Log get shut down?


7/09/2008 9:37 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hello, I must confess that the latest Japanese AIP submarine “Soryu”:
had a fire during a battery test.

Let me try to translate the article on local newspaper:

Sparks due to cabel connection error? Submarine fire、Kobe.

The Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Force submarine “Soryu” (about 2900 metric tons, surface), under construction at Mitsubishi Heavy Industries (Kobe, Hyogo), had an electric shock accident. The strong reverse current from the battery made sparks during a battery test.

According to the company, the accident occurred during a checking of maximum capacity of the battery. The battery was being charged from the internal generator at the time of the accident on Thursday, and was planned to be switched to the inland charging source the next day morning.

The submarine shipyard's director Toshio Maeda (56) said the cause of the accident may be a cable connection error.

Hiroshi from Kobe.

7/09/2008 11:17 PM


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