Aftermath of Canadian submarine fire: PTSD, asthma and depression

HALIFAX — The Canadian sailors who fought a deadly fire aboard the submarine HMCS Chicoutimi in 2004 suffered from significantly elevated levels of post-traumatic stress, depression and asthma in the first five years after the tragedy, a new study says.

However, no cases of cancer were reported during that time frame, the Royal Canadian Navy confirmed Thursday, adding that a longer-term study is needed.

The commander of the navy, Vice-Admiral Art McDonald, said it was unacceptable that the long-awaited study was released five years later than expected.

“For this delay, for which I can offer no explanation … and for our failure to continue communicating routinely with the ex-crew during the intervening period, I have offered my unreserved apology,” McDonald told a news conference at Canadian Forces Base Halifax.

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