British nuclear submarine runs aground: ministry

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A British nuclear submarine ran aground off the coast of a Scottish island on Friday, the defence ministry said, adding that there were no immediate signs of any casualties or environmental damage.

The HMS Astute -- which only entered service in August and is billed as the Royal Navy's most powerful attack submarine -- got into trouble off the Isle of Skye.

A Ministry of Defence spokesman told AFP the submarine had "grounded".

"We are aware of an incident involving one of our submarines off the Isle of Skye. This is a not a nuclear incident," the spokesman said.

"We are responding to the incident and can confirm that there are no injuries to personnel and the submarine remains watertight. There is no indication of any environmental impact."

The accident comes just days after the government announced sweeping cuts to Britain's armed forces including the scrapping of its flagship aircraft carrier, the Ark Royal.

© 2010 AFP

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