Fire Broke out on the French frigate Courbet

Fire Broke out on the French frigate Courbet

The French frigate Courbet (F-712 ) of the La Fayette class returned to the port of Toulon after a fire broke out in the engine room. The ship was en route for deployment to the central and eastern Mediterranean as part of NATO's SNMG2 group when it caught fire off Sardinia on September 15. Although the crew response managed to deal with the incident, it was decided to return to its base for safety reasons.

Upon his arrival in Toulon, investigations into the cause of the fire began, and a report on the repairs required is expected. The F-712 Courbet is the first Lafayette-class frigate that was modernised in 2021. The upgrade includes replacing the old Crotale with a KingKlip Mk2 toroidal sonar with two Sadral anti-aircraft six-point launchers. Also, repairs and improvements were made to electrical and hydraulic systems structural reinforcements and a new combat system, SENIT, was installed.

Courbet (F 712) was almost involved in an armed clash with Turkish Barbaros Class frigate TCG OruçReis (F-245) in 2020.

Tension arose when French Courbet, who was in the Sea Guardian task group, wanted to stop the Çirkin freighter carrying cargo between Turkiye and the port of Misrata, which is under the control of the Libyan National Government. During the tension between Courbet, the frigates TCG Gökova (F-496) and TCG Oruçreis, which were accompanying the freighter, the Courbet passed between warships and the freighter, contrary to convention, and TCG Oruçreis illuminated the ship with its target tracking radar.

France, which complained about the ship to NATO, did not get what it wanted because although the vessel had radar illumination, it was seen that its guns were not pointed at the ship. This revealed that radar illumination was a warning but was not a threat. After NATO did not punish Turkiye, France would withdraw from its Sea Guardian mission, and the ship would undergo modernisation.