Thursday, March 17, 2011

Preserver back to base

HMCS Preserver left Halifax Shipyard on Tuesday and went to Imperial Oil to take on fuel. I detected lots of smoke from her this morning, so it is likely that she flashed up some of her auxiliaries, but maybe not her mains. This afternoon she moved back to HMC Dockyard as a cold move (not using her engines) with the assistance of military and civilian tugs.

This marks the end of the shipyard portion of her $44.7 mn (estimated) refit which started almost a year ago. The ship has long been due for retirement, but thanks to delays in the design of her successor, she had to have this life extension refit. She should now be able to remain in service until the replacement arrives (one hopes.)

Launched in 1969 and commissioned in 1970, she and west coast sister Protecteur, have certainly earned their keep in the RCN. Unfortunately it has cost fortunes in refits for them while waiting for the new ships. Based on recent news, it seems that all is still not well with that program, with the RCN stiff arming the government (and vice versa) over the design/role of the ship, and consequently price.

I say, get on with it or we will be spending another $44.7 million in 5 years or so.


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