Indian submarine fire triggered by battery explosion: navy

16:16, February 28, 2010      

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The Indian submarine fire in an eastern port base on Friday was caused by its battery explosion, the Indian newspaper Hindustan Times reported on Sunday.

"It was due to a defective battery, while the Russia-made Kilo class submarine in the eastern port of Visakhapatnam was performing a routine maintenance," a Navy official was quoted as saying.

The submarine fire on Friday evening killed a 24-year-old technician and two others suffered from burn injuries.

The diesel-electric submarine, acquired in the 1980s and commissioned in 1997, would be succeeded by a more advanced one in the future, said the Navy official.

This was the second fatal accident in the Indian navy's submarine fleet since 2008. In January 2008, another one of the same class, participating in a naval exercise, collided with a merchant ship off Mumbai, had to repair in the dockyard for a month.

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