Indian admirals inspect submarine rescue system at Faslane Naval Base
Rear Admiral Sreenivas Ratnam, Rear Admiral Mohit Gupta, Commander Chris Coles and Mr Vedveer Arya during their visit to the NATO Submarine Rescue System at Faslane.
By Kim Hardie
High ranking officers of the Indian Navy were recently welcomed to Faslane by Assistant Chief of Naval Staff Submarines, Rear Admiral John Weale.
Rear Admiral Mohit Gupta, Assistant Chief of Naval Staff Submarines and Rear Admiral Sreenivas Ratnam, Technical Manager together with staff from the Indian Navy Submarine Rescue Team, were visiting Scotland on a fact-finding mission on submarine rescue.
Following the welcome from RAdm Weale, the group viewed the NATO Submarine Rescue System (NSRS) where they met with Commander Chris Coles of the Submarine Delivery Agency Emergency Response team.
NSRS staff were standing by to show the party around the facilities and equipment, as well as to share their knowledge and experience and to answer any questions from the group.
The NATO Submarine Rescue System is based at HM Naval Base Clyde but is jointly owned by the UK, France and Norway and is capable of deploying anywhere in the world, diving down to a submarine in distress, “mating” with escape hatches and carrying out an evacuation of the vessel.
The Indian Navy were keen to learn how the system is maintained, operated and deployed by the experienced team based at Faslane, as they themselves are in the process of procuring two new submarine rescue systems which are manufactured in Scotland by James Fisher Defence.
The purchase of these state of the art submarine rescue systems will hopefully lead to India joining the global submarine rescue community and offering mutual submarine rescue support to other submarine operating nations. The ethos shared amongst submariners is such that the nearest submarine rescue system could be deployed to a submarine in distress, no matter which country it belongs to.
Speed is essential in any submarine rescue scenario so the more deployable rescue systems we have in the world, the more comfort we can take that there is a viable rescue submarine that could get on scene in time to save the crew.
Commander Chris Coles said: “This was a great opportunity to meet the head of the Indian Submarine Service and his newly formed rescue team. It will be a couple of years before India’s rescue systems are fully operational but NSRS hopes to forge a close working relationship and establish mutual rescue arrangements with the Indian Navy”.
Inspecting the submarine rescue equipment which is shared between nations.