Russian warship Admiral Levchenko’s Ukrainian-made propulsion caught fire in the Barents Sea due to spare parts shortages

Russian anti-submarine ship Admiral Levchenko is burning in the Barents Sea after an engine malfunctioned and caught fire, Dmytro Pletenchuk, press chief for the Southern Defense Forces of Ukraine’s Armed Forces, said on June 10.

In a post on Facebook, Pletenchuk said that the ship with several hundred crew onboard was locked in a “struggle for survival.” “We hope in vain,” he added.

Pletenchuk said the cause of the fire was Ukraine’s sanctions, which meant the Russian Navy couldn’t service “engines manufactured in (Ukraine’s) Mykolaiv on its own.”

Many of Russia’s Soviet-era naval ships were built and serviced in the Ukrainian port city of Mykoliav.

Zorya-Mashproekt Gas Turbine Research and Development Complex is Ukraine’s designer and manufacturer of marine and industrial gas turbine plants. The Enterprise consists of Mashproekt R&D Center and Zorya Serial Production Division. Zorya-Mashproekt is a part of UkrOboronProm (Ukrainian Defence Industry). Zorya-Mashproekt stopped supplying spare parts for Russia’s defence industries, including the Russian Navy.

Since the launch of Russia’s full-scale invasion of Ukraine, most of Moscow’s ships that have caught fire have been in the Black Sea, usually after being struck by Ukrainian naval drones or missiles.

Around 30% of Russia’s Black Sea Fleet had been destroyed as of December 2023, according to the Ukrainian military.

Ukrainian forces reportedly crippled the Rostov-on-Don, one of the Russian fleet’s four missile-capable submarines, in occupied Sevastopol in September 2023.

In one of the latest successful attacks, Ukrainian Magura V5 naval drones hit four Russian patrol boats of the KS-701 Tunets (Tuna) model in Crimea on May 30, Ukraine’s military intelligence said. Two of them were reportedly destroyed, and two others damaged.

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