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Naval Service Lack of Armourers Is ‘A Safety Risk’

13th August 2019
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Large guns must be stripped down for maintenance every three months. Above AFLOAT adds is LÉ Samuel Beckett which as above last week carried out primary armament gunnery drills involving its bow-mounted Oto Melara 76mm gun. Large guns must be stripped down for maintenance every three months. Above AFLOAT adds is LÉ Samuel Beckett which as above last week carried out primary armament gunnery drills involving its bow-mounted Oto Melara 76mm gun. Photo: INS-facebook

According to The Irish Times, the Naval Service is operating with about a third of the required number of personnel needed to safely maintain its weapons.

There are currently only three armourers, also known as armament artificers, in the Naval Service. Between nine and 12 are needed to service and maintain the heavy weapons aboard the fleet’s nine vessels, military sources say.

Some or all of the armourers currently in service recently expressed a desire to leave the Naval Service but were persuaded to stay with an offer of increased pay last week.

Instead of being paid on the so-called “tech five” rate, they will now be paid on the “tech six” rate, which is reserved for highly skilled technicians.

Losing the technicians would have left the Naval Service unable to use its large weapons, even for training purposes.

The newspaper has more including concerns over safety implications.

Published in Navy
Jehan Ashmore

About The Author

Jehan Ashmore

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Jehan Ashmore is a marine correspondent, researcher and photographer, specialising in Irish ports, shipping and the ferry sector serving the UK and directly to mainland Europe. Jehan also occasionally writes a column, 'Maritime' Dalkey for the (Dalkey Community Council Newsletter) in addition to contributing to UK marine periodicals. 

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