24 Oct 2010

Grounded sub now in deep water

7:58 am on 24 October 2010

A Royal Navy submarine which spent 10 hours grounded off the isle of Skye, will remain in deep water for days while assessments are carried out of the state of its hull.

HMS Astute was towed free by a tug on Friday after getting stuck on a shingle bank.

Engineers will determine whether the £1 billion vessel can return to its base on the Clyde under its own power or if it requires assistance.

The BBC reports that the commander could face a court martial.

The vessel has a state-of-the-art sonar system. It is now a couple of miles off the coast, where it will stay for a few days while Navy divers check the hull and rudder for damage.

It was out on sea trials when its rudder became stuck in shallow water close to the Skye Bridge at about 8am (BST) on Friday.

The vessel was towed free at high tide, at about 6pm (BST) on Friday.