Canadian Frigate Spills Fuel in Strait of Georgia

HMCS Calgary at Honolulu during RIMPAC 2014 (U.S. Navy file image)

By The Maritime Executive 02-26-2018 01:49:00

On Saturday, the Canadian frigate HMCS Calgary spilled about 27 tonnes of distillate fuel oil near Nanaimo, B.C.

“The fuel response is still in its initial stages,” the Royal Canadian Navy said in a statement. “As the situation progresses, it will become clearer as to the timeline for any required spill cleanup.” According to Environment and Climate Change Canada's computer modelling, the lightweight fuel oil is unlikely to have a significant impact on the nearby shoreline. 

The commander of the Royal Canadian Navy's Pacific fleet, Commodore Buck Zwick, said that the Calgary's naval distillate is similar to kerosene and tends to evaporate quickly. “By all accounts, the fuel was leaking out slowly, otherwise it would have triggered an alarm sooner,” he told media on Monday. “Once HMCS Calgary became aware of the spill, she reversed course and took all appropriate action to contain the spill. A full investigation is under way to determine the cause."

HMCS Calgary is a Halifax-class ASW frigate based out of Esquimalt, B.C. She joined the fleet in 1995 and completed a mid-life refit in 2012.