Responding to a photo posted in 02SEPT2005, Bubblehead asked,What the hell's that red thing I got hanging in front of my crotch?
Two years later on 06Sept2007, Molten Eagle addressed a new Russian photo and again asked the obvious question. Fred Fry had the best answer, but M.E. could not believe what, if correct, it certainly implied (highlighted below). M.E.'s assessment has now proved tragically correct. Although Russian press alluded to the fact Nerpa's crew not being far from their breathing apparatus, they had been vague about wearing them (especially non-crew passengers). Now we have confirmation (the object being worn on crew belts in the photo below).
Confirmed by second source:
[Russian submarine] Crew members carry special breathing apparatus with them at all times as protection from the gas if the fire extinguishing system goes off. They are also trained to use the complicated apparatus.
Fred Fry, your guess makes better sense than anything so far. Wearing an 'Emergency Escape Breathing Device', however, projects minimal confidence in the CO, the crew, and the boat. If your guess is correct, what an interesting commentary on the psychology of Russian sub crew morale it may suggest. Also, if accurate, a major point seems to have been missed by analysts and journalists who covered the intervening (August 2000) Kursk tragedy. An excellent submission, regardless.
Everything I hear is that the equipment is old and dangerous and the conditions are not humane.
Labels: K-152 Nerpa