At least five Indian Navy personnel have been injured in an accident on board a Sindhughosh class diesel-electric submarine, when it encountered problems off the coast of Mumbai.
Press Trust of India cited Navy sources as saying that a leakage had occurred in the battery compartment of the INS Sindhuratna (S59) during an exercise, suffocating five naval personnel.
The sailors who fell unconscious were transferred to a Navy hospital in Mumbai.
The incident is the tenth involving an Indian Navy warship and the third involving a submarine in the last seven months, and has also led to two onboard Naval officers being reported as missing.
Hindustan Times quoted a source as saying that the deputy electrical officer (lieutenant commander) and the watch keeping officer (lieutenant) are missing.
"Compartments get sealed automatically when the fire-fighting system kicks in," the source said.
Meanwhile, a board of inquiry under a senior officer has been ordered to determine the cause of the accident.
The type 877EKM submarine is powered by diesel-electric propulsion with two diesel generators and one propulsion motor. The vessel features a MGK-400 sonar, active radar with a target separation system as well as a radar warning receiver and a direction finder.
The Sindughosh class submarine has been designed to support anti-submarine and anti-surface ship warfare missions.
Submarines in the Sindughosh class can carry a crew of up to 52, have a surfaced and submerged displacement capacity of 2,300t and 3,950t respectively, and a range of 6,000 miles.
Last year, the Indian Navy’s Sindhughosh class submarine, INS Sindhurakshak (S63), sank off the Mumbai harbour, killing 18 onboard personnel.
Image: Indian Navy’s Sindhughosh class submarine at sea. Photo: chanakyathegreat.