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Decommissioning announcement 19 Sep 2014 - 2x Destroyers and 2 x AOR

J

jollyjacktar

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According to CBC radio this morning there will be an announcement of the decomissioning of all three 280's, Athabaskan, Iroquois, Algonquin and the AOR Protecteur.  No surprise there.  I'm sure that Preserver won't be far behind.
 

Ostrozac

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What is the impact on manning when a ship is taken out of service without an immediately available replacement? Now, I'm sure that all the individual sailors will be posted out to appropriate positions with other units, I'm more interested in how the overall structure would change. When these four UIC are deleted, are the approx 1000 affected positions assigned to some kind of a fleet manning pool? Or does the RCN establishment shrink by 1000 pers?

 

The Bread Guy

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A bit more from The Canadian Press:
The Canadian navy is going to retire four veteran ships that have been in service for decades.

Sources tell The Canadian Press that HMCS Algonquin, Athabaskan, Iroquois and Protecteur will be decommissioned, with an announcement expected later today.

The move comes as no surprise for any of the ships.

Protecteur's days were thought to be numbered after a fire in the 45-year-old tanker's engine room left the ship adrift in the Pacific last February and it had to be towed back to Victoria from Hawaii.

Protecteur and sister ship HMCS Preserver were ordered replaced by the federal government a decade ago but their replacements aren't due to enter service until 2019 at the earliest.

The other three vessels, all Tribal class destroyers, were commissioned in the early 70s and have been Canada's largest fighting ships for decades.

The Tribals have been a mainstay of Canada's contribution to NATO and have been sent to various international troublespots. The fourth Tribal, HMCS Huron, was retired in 2000 and sunk as a target in 2007.

Athabaskan left Halifax on Saturday to join an ongoing multi-national patrol of the Caribbean to fight organized crime and drug trafficking. It wasn't clear how long she would be at sea.

The exact timeline for retiring and disposing of the ships is unclear ....
 

Halifax Tar

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http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/nova-scotia/canadian-navy-to-retire-four-cold-war-era-ships-sources-1.2771385

This is a huge operational hit to a small Navy like ours.  On the plus side it should amount to some cost savings.
 

MAJONES

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It would appear that a special deputy aid to an associate deputy minister figured out that the Navy would be much cheaper to operate if it didn't have ships.  As a reward, the special deputy aid has been promoted to deputy aid and the associate deputy minister got assigned a parking space 62.5 feet closer to the building entrance.  ::)
 

cameron

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While the AOR's and the Iroquois Class destroyers were certainly scheduled and in some cases overdue for retirement, the problem I have with this is that the replacements aren't even under construction yet.  Successsive governments knew the expiration of the service lives of these ships was imminent and did nothing.  So now Canada will have to depend on her allies for logistical support for her surface combatants until the new JSS's hit the water and even worse, the RCN has no area air defence capability and a replacement hasn't even been selected for the Iroquois.  I can't help but wonder if the SCSC's will even become a reality before I get grandchildren.  The Royal Australian Navy Hobart Class may be having its issues but at least Australia started building a replacement for their Perry Class Frigates before retiring them.
 

Eye In The Sky

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I'll skip the "should haves/could have/ought to's" on this one and simply say "thanks for your service" to these tired ol ladies and to all the sailors who crewed them over the many years.

:salute:
 

Nfld Sapper

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Eye In The Sky said:
I'll skip the "should haves/could have/ought to's" on this one and simply say "thanks for your service" to these tired ol ladies and to all the sailors who crewed them over the many years.

:salute:

:goodpost:
 

Colin Parkinson

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MAJONES said:
It would appear that a special deputy aid to an associate deputy minister figured out that the Navy would be much cheaper to operate if it didn't have ships.  As a reward, the special deputy aid has been promoted to deputy aid and the associate deputy minister got assigned a parking space 62.5 feet closer to the building entrance.  ::)

Not to mention it frees up money for 5 more Admirals and their staffs. I understand that the RCN in 2030 will be using Stone Frigates exclusively.
 

Pat in Halifax

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cameron said:
I can't help but wonder if the SCSC's will even become a reality before I get grandchildren.  The Royal Australian Navy Hobart Class may be having its issues but at least Australia started building a replacement for their Perry Class Frigates before retiring them.
SCSC is long dead. The CSC Project (Canadian Surface Combatant) which replaced it, is alive and well and went to Project Definition phase in Nov 2012. What the hell do you think that mother of all shipyard buildings going up on the Halifax waterfront is for? Yes, AOPS will come first but the design of the building is based on the latest design version for CSC...which is not for public disposition at this time.
 

The Bread Guy

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More from the Info-machine on the RCN's "Transition to the Future Fleet":
Preparing for the future fleet

(....)

HMCS Iroquois .... HMCS Iroquois will prepare for its official paying off ceremony in January 2015 in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

HMCS Algonquin .... Considering the relatively short service life remaining for HMCS Algonquin, which was scheduled to be retired in early 2019, and its current state of repair, the cost to re-instate this ship to full operational capability no longer represents a responsible use of public funds. As a result, HMCS Algonquin will begin preparations for pay off in the near future ....

HMCS Protecteur .... HMCS Protecteur will be officially retired after sustaining serious damage in a fire in February 2014. An extensive assessment of HMCS Protecteur has concluded that the ship was damaged beyond economical repair.  Considering the relatively short service life remaining for HMCS Protecteur, which was scheduled to be retired in 2017, and its current state of repair, the cost to re-instate the ship to full operational capability would not represent a responsible use of public funds. As a result, the ship will remain alongside and be prepared for disposal as early as is practically feasible ....

HMCS Preserver .... As a result of its current material state, and considering the relatively short service life remaining for HMCS Preserver, the cost to reinstate this ship to full operational capability does not represent a responsible use of public funds. HMCS Preserver will therefore cease its operational life, remain alongside and prepare for pay off in the near future ....
 

cavalryman

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It would be nice if least a couple of the ships become artificial reefs.  Can‘t think of a better way to end a long and honourable service than to become part of the ocean and give divers decades of opportunity to visit them. Beats being sold for scrap. Of course as a diver I'm a tad biased :salute:
 

Colin Parkinson

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After the pain that the ARSBC just went through with the HMCS Annapolis, not sure if the volunteers are up to another one for a couple of years. I wonder if any of our allies have some ships we can "borrow" Ones that are running now or hot layup to save costs. Borrow the ship and small crew to teach our guys how to run it.
 

MilEME09

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Since this thread is already about provider

Navy sending four Cold War era ships into retirement

The Canadian Press
Published Friday, September 19, 2014 8:06AM EDT
Last Updated Friday, September 19, 2014 5:49PM EDT

OTTAWA -- The navy's decision to retire four venerable warships will mean finding short-term stop-gaps until new vessels are built.

Two of the fleet's three destroyers, HMCS Iroquois and Algonquin, and both supply vessels, HMCS Preserver and HMCS Protecteur, have made their last voyages and will be decommissioned, Vice-Admiral Mark Norman said Friday.

Norman, commander of the Royal Canadian Navy, said the retirements have been in the cards for some time, but other developments speeded up the plans.
HMCS Iroquois Canadian warship

Ship stats: Details about Canadian warships being decommissioned

In addition to general wear and tear from four decades at sea, Algonquin and Protecteur both were involved in serious accidents recently. Given that they were slated for retirement shortly, there was no point in repairing them.

Algonquin was in a collision in 2013 and Protecteur suffered a major engine room fire last February and had to be towed home from Hawaii. Serious corrosion problems were found in Preserver in recent months.

Iroquois had been slated for retirement next year anyway.

"All of the ships are at or approaching the end of their effective and productive service lives and any further expenditure of time or money in these ships no longer makes sense," Norman said.

The navy is essentially left with a single destroyer, HMCS Athabaskan, 12 Halifax-class frigates and some smaller, coastal defence vessels. The frigates are going through a modernization process and some of them will be docked over the next few years.

Defence analyst Martin Shadwick said losing the four ships will mean less flexibility for the navy in what missions it can take on and how it uses the operational assets it has.

"Our ability to take on commitments both at home and overseas is going to be restrained at least until they get all 12 of the frigates back in service," he said from Toronto.

Norman said he's confident that the navy can meet its commitments.

The destroyers were Cold War sub killers launched in the 1970s. They were refitted in the 1990s as command-and-control ships and area air-defence vessels.

Norman said he expects the frigates can replace them, for the most part, although their anti-aircraft missiles aren't as far-reaching.

"In many respects, a modern, highly capable frigate like we're producing in the Halifax class through the modernization, is as capable in most respects if not more capable than what is now 20-year old technology in the legacy Iroquois class."

The navy is looking at ways to replace the supply ships, which were used to refuel and resupply ships at sea. Replacements aren't due until 2019 at the earliest.

"Options include potential enhancements, or additions, to existing agreements with key allies, as well as some made-in-Canada solutions," Norman said. He wouldn't go into details, but said other navies needing a temporary fix to such a shortage have borrowed vessels or refitted civilian tankers.

The crews of the four warships, about 1,400 sailors in all, will be reassigned. Some will spend months stripping their ships of gear that can be recycled and preparing them for disposal. Others will be retrained for jobs aboard the frigates.

The ultimate fate of the ships lies with Public Works. Norman said he doesn't know if they will be sold for scrap or sunk as artificial reefs.

HMCS Huron, a sister-ship in the destroyer class, was retired in 2000 and sunk as a target in 2007.

While none of the four retiring ships is to sail again, their disposal may take a year or 18 months. Iroquois, however, will be the first to go. She will be formally paid off in January.

NDP defence critic Jack Harris said the decision to decommission the vessels came because of government penny-pinching.

"These ships are being taken out of service because the government can't afford, the navy can't afford to operate them and still try and get their procurement budget going," he said.

"So this government really is putting the screws on, on the navy and the navy's ability to operate in its mandate, and this is the consequence."
http://www.ctvnews.ca/canada/navy-sending-four-cold-war-era-ships-into-retirement-1.2014607

well there goes the navy
 

Edward Campbell

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This decision makes good financial and engineering/maintenance sense for the Department of National Defence but it also makes good political sense for the RCN: it highlights the newest round of military "rust out" (the last one was in the 1990s) and makes it politically possible, even attractive for the government to move ahead with the shipbuilding project ... ahead of the F35 and the Army's priorities.
 

Stoker

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E.R. Campbell said:
This decision makes good financial and engineering/maintenance sense for the Department of National Defence but it also makes good political sense for the RCN: it highlights the newest round of military "rust out" (the last one was in the 1990s) and makes it politically possible, even attractive for the government to move ahead with the shipbuilding project ... ahead of the F35 and the Army's priorities.

It does however there will be some sort of PM going on the 280's to strip and maintain parts for the Athabaskan which will be operated for the next several years. The Preserver could be operated as alongside fueling platform. Many personnel have already been reassigned to the fleet from those hulls.
 

Petard

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E.R. Campbell said:
This decision makes good financial and engineering/maintenance sense for the Department of National Defence but it also makes good political sense for the RCN: it highlights the newest round of military "rust out" (the last one was in the 1990s) and makes it politically possible, even attractive for the government to move ahead with the shipbuilding project ... ahead of the F35 and the Army's priorities.

That might be, but there's nothing in the message being delivered that explains how such a significant capability reduction, particularly in air defence, will be filled in the transition period to when those new AOPS and CSC ships reach IOC

I suspect this is more about keeping the ledger where the GoC wants it to be; they already had public support with the way they've framed the National Shipbuilding Procurement Strategy
 

Stoker

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Petard said:
That might be, but there's nothing in the message being delivered that explains how such a significant capability reduction, particularly in air defence, will be filled in the transition period to when those new AOPS and CSC ships reach IOC

I suspect this is more about keeping the ledger where the GoC wants it to be; they already had public support with the way they've framed the National Shipbuilding Procurement Strategy

I agree with you, the AOPS is definitely not what we need now, we need new destroyers and tankers and thats years away. The AOPS while nice to have, doesn't reverse the capability reduction as you mentioned we have now.
 

Occam

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Might be worth editing the thread title to more accurately reflect that both AORs and all but one of the destroyers are to be paid off.
 

Fishbone Jones

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So how many sailors would this leave floating without a job?

What is the RCN planning to do with the surplus?
 
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