A South Korean submarine exploded Tuesday possibly due to gas accumulated within the vessel.
The submarine was docked at the repair facility from May 3 for testing, before beginning its full scale repairs. However, we were about to send it for repairs today, a military official was quoted as saying by various local media.
The military is investigating on precisely how the accident took place, he added.
The explosion killed three sailors and injured one while they were trying to open the hatch of the submarine.One sailor was found killed at the scene and another died of his injuries at a navy hospital, while the body of the third was found by the navy after a search that lasted more than five hours.
The submarine had been in service for the past 30 years.
Korea Navy (ROKN) presently operates a submarine flotilla of nine diesel-electric Jang Bogo-class Type 209/1200 and six Son Wonil-class Type 214 hybrid diesel-electric or fuel cell vessels with air-independent propulsion.
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South Korea is likely to build new nuclear-powered submarines in order to counter North Koreas Submarine-launched ballistic missile (SLBM) threat. South Korean military experts feel there is a necessity to build submarines that are capable of countering North Korean submarine launched Ballistic missiles
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