A £6bn fleet in dry dock is the last thing the UK needs

Type 45 Destroyer HMS Diamond''Picture: Shaun Roster/www.shaunroster.com
Type 45 Destroyer HMS Diamond''Picture: Shaun Roster/www.shaunroster.com
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Reliability woes with the Type 45s’ engines are nothing new; sadly it’s been an on-going issue for years.

So with that in mind, why has it taken so long for this problem to be addressed?

With fewer naval ships than ever before, surely the government needs to focus on maintaining the fleet and ensuring all its ships are up-to-scratch.

The MoD has insisted the Type 45s are some of the most capable warships in the world.

And on paper this is true – they have some of the most state-of-the-art sensors and air defence systems in the world, as well as a ship’s company of some of the most well-trained sailors.

But all that pales into insignificance if the ship doesn’t have the capability to go from A to B, reliably.

This has already happened on a number of occasions – HMS Daring, for example, lost power in the Atlantic on her first voyage to America.

Although the ship was in no immediate danger on this occasion, this could have been an entirely different – and more deadly prospect, if the same fault occurred mid-combat.

That is what the former head of the Royal Navy, Admiral Lord Alan West has said.

And frankly, The News agrees.

Such systemic problems with such a vital piece of equipment undermines the capability of the Royal Navy and could put the lives of our brave men and women in danger.

Frankly, it’s an embarrassment that this is even an issue.

So, with this in mind, we wholeheartedly back Lord West’s sentiments urging action to take place as sooner rather than later.

For the government to drag its heels any longer only is unacceptable.

The last thing the nation needs is a £6bn fleet stuck in dry dock.