Canadian navy submarine performs tests off Victoria
HMCS Corner Brook is going through two days of testing, called "trim and incline trials" as part of a program called Sub-Safe, according to Chief Petty Officer Second Class Nelson Harvey, who was dockside on Tuesday.
"We do this at Ogden Point because it’s completely benign conditions," said Harvey.
"They take the boat and put it underwater, then they have big weights all over the boat where they can just move things around, move the water around if they need to, and they can test all the equipment that you can only test underwater," he said.
Only the mast was visible Tuesday morning, with most testing happening below the surface, including escape gear.
The activity brought out the curious, like Racheal Leff and her young children who were wanting to catch a glimpse of the sub.
"We’ve seen it a couple of times but I think this is the closest that we’ve been able to see one, so pretty exciting," said Leff.
The submarine hasn’t seen active duty since 2011, after it struck the ocean floor off B.C.'s coast.
Then in 2019, one of the vessel’s ballast tanks was ruptured while in the care of maintenance contractor Babcock Canada, adding to the sub's delay in returning to service.
Since then, the vessel has gone though significant repairs and upgrades such as a new high-speed satellite communication mast and equipment to allow it to fire modernized torpedoes.
According to the navy, it will be one of the most advanced submarines in the Canadian fleet when it returns to service.
HMCS Corner Brook is a long-range hunter-killer submarine (SSK) of the Royal Canadian Navy. Canada acquired the Victoria-class submarine from the United Kingdom in 1998 and named it after the city of Corner Brook, N.L.
Harvey says the public is welcome to come down Tuesday and Wednesday this week and watch what’s going on.
There's no public word yet what’s next for HMCS Corner Brook after this current round of testing, or when it will return to active duty.