A top Russian military official has claimed that the 14 sailors who died aboard a nuclear submarine last week averted a disaster of global proportions.
The high ranking sailors were aboard a submarine christened Losharik when a fire broke out in the battery compartment. The fire began to spread, and while the standard fire fighting equipment onboard worked they could not eliminate the source of the fire.
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The heroic sailors began fighting for the survivability of the ship. They sealed off the affected section of the ship and battled the fire for a reported hour and a half. Only 3 people out of 17 crew members survived the incident after they initiated an emergency surfacing.
The submarine was initially designed as a deep diving nuclear power station to perform deep sea missions on the sea floor. During the incident the vessel was in the Arctic in the Barents sea.
We can speculate what would have happened had the fire gotten to the nuclear reactor that was onboard.
In the recent documentaries of Chernobyl disaster, we saw what happens when fire breaches a nuclear reactor and the scale of widespread pollution and radiation that continues to affect the town of Chernobyl to this day.
Now imagine a reactor going off in the Arctic which is the largest source of global fresh water. We would be talking about worldwide pollution of the global water system for years.
The sailors were buried on July 6 in a private ceremony in St Petersburg. The Russian government has remained silent on the activities that the submarine was conducting at the time.