POLITICS
04/26/2013 09:28 EDT | Updated 06/26/2013 05:12 EDT

Power failure and engine restart linked to crash of trawler and navy frigate

ESQUIMALT, B.C. - A power failure followed by an unexpected engine restart aboard an American fishing trawler occurred moments before it rammed a Canadian navy frigate in Esquimalt Harbour, near Victoria.

Transportation Safety Board investigator Raymond Matthew says the probe has just begun and it could be a year before there are firm conclusions about what caused the Tuesday morning accident at CFB Esquimalt.

Matthew says investigators have confirmed there was a blackout aboard the 90-metre trawler as it was being towed into dry-dock.

Then the vessel’s engine suddenly restarted, propelling it into the port bow of HMCS Winnipeg, which was docked in the navy yard while undergoing a refit.

Matthew says the TSB is trying to determine what caused the blackout and sudden engine restart, and he also says it's too early to provide a damage estimate for the warship or trawler.

Six people were treated for minor injuries, but all were released from hospital within hours of the collision. (CFAX)