After a long and productive life, all ships do - eventually - face disposal action. This page will deal with various options from a ship being sent to a breaker’s yard to disposal by sinking.
Ship Disposal. A paper was written by CNTHA’s Tony Thatcher for a Marine Technical Symposium in 2013. This paper provides a good background of the ship disposal process beginning with the International and National regulations. Ship Disposal paper
a). This method of disposal was chosen for HMCS HURON. The following has been copied from another webpage dealing with HURON.
Over time it became apparent that there were not sufficient personnel numbers to support the operation of two Tribals based in Esquimalt and as a result, in 2000, HURON was placed in mothballs. Five years later she was paid off for disposal.
In 2006 HURON was assigned target status for a sinking exercise as part of Operation TRIDENT FURY. A mixture of Maritime Command Pacific and US Navy ships and submarines and Air Command CF-18’s were given an opportunity to bombard HURON until she sank. Before being towed to the offshore weapons range west of Vancouver Island, HURON was stripped of her armaments and environmentally harmful contaminants. On May 14, 2007 bombardment began with Sea Sparrow missiles and gunfire. Ultimately, it was ALGONQUIN’s gun that was responsible for the sinking and, somewhat ironically, that gun had originally been fitted in HURON!
Many will have seen the History Television documentary entitled “Sinking a Destroyer” that described what happened on that day in May, 2007 off Canada’s west coast. This series of photos shows HURON slipping into the Pacific Ocean.
HURON was remembered by approximately 30 former HURON’s who gathered in the HMCS BYTOWN Officers Mess in Ottawa on the day of the sinking. To read about that memorable day, please visit the CNTHA Newsletter page for an article by Don Wilson.
- Retiring old friends
a). One of the disposal projects for 2017 has been the disposal of YFP 312 - a long-time provider of transportation around Esquimalt Harbour and occasional host to cadet trips around the Gulf Islands. This photo shows YFP 312 prepared for disposal.
b). 2018 saw HMCS ATHABASKAN on her way to retirement and disposal. Here is an article from the Ottawa Citizen dated 2018-03-30 showing her being towed from Halifax harbour to her disposal site in Cape Breton.
Additional articles, papers and photos will be posted in due course.