Blaze damages £1bn Royal Navy destroyer in Portsmouth

HMS Dragon was rededicated in a ceremony at Portsmouth Naval Base on Friday.

Picture: Sarah Standing (160941-6380) PPP-160807-154546001
HMS Dragon was rededicated in a ceremony at Portsmouth Naval Base on Friday. Picture: Sarah Standing (160941-6380) PPP-160807-154546001

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A FIRE has damaged one of Britain’s most advanced air defence warships.

The blaze sparked inside a machinery area in HMS Dragon, while she was alongside at Portsmouth Naval Base.

Members of Dragon’s crew rushed to extinguish the fire before it swept through the £1bn Type 45 destroyer.

Teams managed to quell the flames before any serious damage was caused to the vessel – which sports a painting of bright red, fire breathing dragon on its hull.

However, the Royal Navy has this afternoon confirmed a probe into the blaze has been launched.

A spokeswoman based at navy command, on Whale Island, told The News: ‘The fire was rapidly extinguished by members of the ship’s company.

‘No-one was injured. The incident will now be subject to an investigation.’

Dragon returned to duty last year following a major upgrade of to her propulsion system.

The engines of the 151m had previously been blighted with problems.

Dragon returned to the fleet in July of last year.

In February was responsible for rescuing 14 sailors stranded in Atlantic after their yacht lost its mast.

Dragon is one of the navy’s six Type 45 destroyers all based in Portsmouth.

The others are HMS Duncan, HMS Diamond, HMS Defender, HMS Dauntless and HMS Daring which is currently on deployment.

Dragon will remain at the naval base while the investigation takes place.