Discussion in 'History' started by Billy Q, Jan 19, 2016.

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  1. Much is made of service in minehunters in today's navy.
    When did the RN sweep such a live mine?
    1947? or later?
  2. I'm sure there used to be an annual gathering of sweepers and they would go out and sweep the WW2 minefields in the North Sea.
  3. That is so . Most of the mines were swept and destroyed by 1947 or thereabouts I think. . A couple lurking off Albania sank two of our destroyers in 1947 . We are still attempting to get reparations--Fat chance

    Given that, why do spend all that money today on Minehunters?
  4. Billy Q you are Jeremy Corbin and I claim my £5 :)
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  5. They sweep live mines more often than you think. There are lots of old WW2 ones that crop up, - there was one on a beach just before Xmas.
  6. technically they *hunt* mines - I don't think we've done sweeping since 2005....
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  7. Ninja_Stoker

    Ninja_Stoker War Hero Moderator

    I'm fairly sure I remember sweeping mines in the Skagerrak whilst on HMS Hurworth together with STANAFORCHAN in about 1992 ish.
  8. Didn't they do the same off Libya recently, as well as in the Gulf?
  9. Seaweed

    Seaweed War Hero Book Reviewer

    In the sixties there were still a sufficient number of mines thought to be about in the North Sea for ships to be confined to NEMEDRI (Northern Europe and Med Routing Instructions) channels, marked on charts and by buoys*, when transiting along the coast of Holland, N Germany and Denmark. There was an annual NATO sweepfest - don't know when that stopped.

    * Very tricky navigation anyway because of tidal streams on the one hand and water gushing out of Europe's rivers on the other.
  10. Serious sweeping done in 2003 that I'm sure of, clearing the approaches to Umm Qasr. (Too much crap on the seabed for hunting to work...)

    And before that, 1991, lots of mines laid by Iraq that needed clearing: firstly to get the US battleships into range of Kuwait (took 25 MCMVs three weeks, that job) and then to make the area safe enough to navigate after the war.
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  11. Purple_twiglet

    Purple_twiglet War Hero Moderator

    Lots of work done regularly by the force, its also a case of contingency too. We rely on swept channels to ensure that vessels can go in and out of harbour without problems - for instance SSBNs. Keeping a capability to do this is key, not just to get rid of anything thats found, but to know what is there day to day and spot what changes.

    The presence of the RN MCMV squadron in the gulf is critical because if the straits of hormuz were ever to close, then you can kiss goodbye to the global economy. RN is the world leader in MCMV capability, (even USN pales in insignificance) and this is a major commitment for us.

    These days its all hunting not sweeping though - the idea in future is to move the technical stuff ashore, keep the hull out of the minefield and use technology to get rid of it instead.
  12. We had to search for a ground mine dragged up and then ditched by a Troon fisherman back in 98 whilst in the channels.
    This was quickly followed by live hunting in the approaches to Tallinn, Estonia with the Swedes, Estonians and Dutch due to the amount of 'stuff' the Soviets dumped when they left.
    Following year was Kosovo and as part of the NATO Med MCM squadron we had to clear the Adriatic of bombs ditched after unsuccessful bombing runs on the Serbs - OK, not technically mine hunting but them Mk82's were hard to crack! Had to use 2 MDCs on each bomb!
  13. Wartime mines (historical ordnance) hunted and disposed? How about during Exercise ARTEMIS TRIDENT in March 2015 among several other recent occasions?


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