Officer killed while defuelling operation of nuclear-powered submarine

On June 6th an officer was killed while defuelling operation conducted by radiological service boat PM-12. The steel wire holding lifted container for fuel broke off and the container weighing seven tons pressed down the officer who was standing below. The officer died on the way to the hospital in Polyarny. There is no avalible information about any crack in the container or damage on the spent nuclear fuel.

This was not the first incident onboard PM-12. In 1993 eight persons were exposed to high doses of radiation – four officers and four sailors. PM-12 is located at the Nerpa ship repair yard for nuclear-powered submarines.

In the end of June a Murmansk newspaper reported that there was a nuclear refuelling operation underway at Snezhnogorsk in Olenjya Bay. The officials from the Technical Department of the Northern Fleet did not allow representatives of Murmansk environmental committee to inspect the operation.


Igor Kudrik

igor@bellona.no