The Norwegian Navy has removed the remaining torpedoes from the KNM Helge Ingstad, which gathers rust on the seabed off the coast of Bergen, following an avoidable collision with an oil tanker last November.
About half of the frigate's weaponry was removed, taken inland and destroyed at a landfill site, the Norwegian Armed Forces reported. Other arms were detonated on site after a risk assessment indicated that they were too volatile to attempt to move and could jeopardise sappers' lives.
Spectacular video footage of the detonation shows jets of water spring dozens of metres into the air over freezing Hjeltefjorden.
More ammunition remains on board the warship; Whether it will be salvaged or detonated remains to be seen.
The Helge Ingstad was one of the most modern ships in Norway's Navy; it cost over $500 million dollars. Its loss admittedly undermined the Navy's defence capability.
The Helge Ingstad sank while returning from the NATO drill Trident Juncture, which was marketed as the largest on Norwegian soil in decades and gathered some 50,000 troops, 10,000 vehicles and dozens of warships.
On its way back, the Helge Ingstad, with a crew of 137, collided with a Maltese-flagged oil tanker carrying 625,000 barrels of crude oil. With a ten-metre gash in its starboard side, the frigate was towed to a shallow bay, where it became submerged. By contrast, the tanker emerged from the collision almost unscathed.
A subsequent investigation determined that the crash had been avoidable. Additionally, the rapid flooding of the vessel was classified as a safety issue, the critical errors allegedly valid for the Norwegian Navy's four remaining frigates. The Spanish shipyard vehemently denied the claims as a cover-up.