The UK Ministry of Defence (MoD) has reportedly confirmed that a Russian Navy’s Northern Fleet submarine hit HMS Northumberland’s sonar in late 2020.
The incident was captured on camera by a Channel 5 TV crew.
According to the MoD, HMS Northumberland’s Merlin helicopter pilots had spotted the Russian submarine’s periscope before it dived in. The boat later came in contact with the frigate’s sonar.
Details on whether the Russian submarine had suffered damage were not available, but HMS Northumberland is said to have returned to the port for a sonar replacement.
A MoD spokesman told BBC: “In late 2020 a Russian submarine being tracked by ‘HMS Northumberland’ came into contact with her towed array sonar.
“The Royal Navy regularly tracks foreign ships and submarines in order to ensure the defence of the United Kingdom.”
On 04 December 2020, the UK Royal Navy revealed that eight of its ships have monitored the movements of nine Russian vessels, which included a surfaced Kilo-class submarine, destroyer, corvette, patrol ship and their supporting tugs and supply ships.
According to the navy, the Type 23 frigate HMS Northumberland was monitoring the Russian Navy’s Udaloy-class destroyer, the Vice-Admiral Kulakov.
The destroyer had sailed North West of the Outer Hebrides, off the west coast of Scotland.