Esquimalt navy collision to delay DND, ship repair operations

Navy officials won't confirm extent of damage to frigate

Obvious hull damage can be seen on the American Dynasty

Obvious hull damage can be seen on the American Dynasty

The investigation into a collision between a fishing vessel and a navy frigate at CFB Esquimalt will delay scheduled work at Victoria shipyards, but officials aren’t saying for how long.

On Tuesday morning, American Dynasty slammed into HMCS Winnipeg, causing damage to both ships as well as to “C” Jetty, where the Winnipeg was docked.

“That ship (the Dynasty) was on its way into the dock today, so clearly that’s delayed, but assessing the impact to Victoria’s ongoing schedule will take some time,” said Brian Carter, Seaspan shipyards president.

The collision occurred as the 90-metre fishing trawler was being escorted by tugboats into the Esquimalt graving dock.

Six of the 65 people working on the Winnipeg at the time of impact were transported to Victoria General Hospital with minor injuries; they have since been discharged.

HMCS Winnipeg recently underwent a massive systems retrofit. A DND spokesperson would not confirm the estimated damage to the Winnipeg, which recently underwent a massive systems retrofit, but admitted there would be a delay to its scheduled operations.

The federal government owns the Esquimalt graving dock, also known as Victoria Shipyards.

Seaspan leases part of the drydock from Public Works and Government Services Canada for its Victoria-based shipbuilding and ship repair work, and also has operations out of North Vancouver.

The complex investigation is being led by the Transportation Safety Board and includes the Department of National Defence, Seaspan and American Seafoods Company, owner of the Dynasty.

Watch raw video of the collision here.

dpalmer@vicnews.com

UPDATE: A previous version of this story stated Department of National Defence owns the Esquimalt graving dock.