Today, RT reported that a fire broke out on a nuclear-powered submarine at the Zvezdochka ship repair center in the Arkhangelsk region in Northern Russia.
The incident occurred aboard the K-266 Oryol, an Oscar II-class nuclear-powered attack submarine (SSGN), which is part of Russia’s Northern Fleet. According to a spokesperson of the Zvezdochka dockyards, no weapons were on board when the fire broke out.
“The nuclear fuel from the ‘Orel’ was unloaded when the submarine arrived for maintenance to the dry dock. The reactor has been shut down. No workers or members of the crew were harmed during the fire,” Ilya Zhitomirsky, the spokesperson emphasized.
The fire allegedly started in a compartment close to the ship’s tern. Sputnik News notes that according to preliminary information from a law enforcement source, the fire was caused by welding operations. RT reports that welding operations were also the cause of a fire aboard the Delta-IV-class SSBN Yekaterinburg in December 2011.
The Oryol has been serving in Russia’s Northern Fleet for the past 21 years. In 2013, it was transported to the shipyard for a general overhaul, which was scheduled to be completed in 2016. As of now, it remains unclear how much damage the fire caused and in what way it will postpone the Oryol’s return to active duty.