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Nuclear submarine fire figures revealed via BBC

There have been 266 fires on nuclear submarines in the past 25 years, the Ministry of Defence has revealed.

The incidents included 74 on ballistic missile submarines. Three happened while the vessels were in naval bases; one of these was on a ballistic missile submarine.

SNP defence spokesman Angus Robertson said the “apparent vulnerability” to fire raised “grave questions”.

The MoD said no fire had ever had an impact on nuclear safety.

Peter Luff, Minister for Defence Equipment, Support and Technology, gave the figures in response to a parliamentary question from Mr Robertson.

Of the 266 fires, 243 were classed as “small-scale” and categorised as a localised fire, such as a minor electrical fault creating smoke.

There were 20 medium-scale fires that were generally categorised as a localised fire, such as a failure of mechanical equipment creating smoke and flame, requiring the use of “significant onboard resources”.

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