Quarter of crew on £3billion nuclear submarine dubbed ‘HMS sex and cocaine’ test positive for coronavirus after defying orders and going drinking at local bars and strip clubs
- 35 crew on secretive HMS Vigilant tested positive for Covid, source revealed
- Among those who tested positive were a doctor and an executive officer
- Nuclear weapons codes are known by that executive officer and 1 other person
- Sailors defied orders while docked at the Kings Bay US Navy base in Georgia
A £3billion nuclear submarine dubbed ‘HMS Sex and Cocaine’ has seen a coronavirus outbreak among its lockdown-defying crew.
More than 35 crewmembers on highly-secretive HMS Vigilant – one of the four submarines which make up the UK’s nuclear deterrent – tested positive, a source has revealed.
Among those who tested positive – a quarter of the vessels team – was a doctor and an executive officer.
The codes to deploy the nuclear weapons stored on the ship are known only by that executive officer and one other person.
Sailors defied orders while docked at the Kings Bay US Navy base in Georgia – which has seen 318,000 coronavirus cases and 7,282 deaths.
They flocked to local bars and strip clubs in the state, with one trip seeing them travel 200-miles away to a beach in Florida, an insider said.
In other coronavirus news today:
- London Mayor Sadiq Khan warned it is ‘inevitable’ London will be plunged into a Tier Two lockdown this week;
- A poll found Britons do not believe the Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s ‘Three Tier’ lockdown goes far enough;
- Tory curfew rebels made a symbolic protest against the 10pm pub closure rule but were unable to prevent it;
- Health minister Helen Whately said care home residents’ families will be treated as key workers with weekly tests;
- Nicola Sturgeon trolled the PM over his Sage spat, saying her ‘circuit breaker’ is ‘rooted in scientific advice’;
- Bolton West Conservative MP Chris Green quit as a parliamentary private secretary over the new lockdown.
HMS Vigilant (pictured), a £3billion nuclear submarine dubbed ‘HMS Sex and Cocaine’, has seen a coronavirus outbreak among its lockdown-defying crew
Florida is the third worst-hit state in the US with 738,749 cases in total.
Maintenance work is currently being carried out on Trident 2 – a submarine-launched ballistic missile – which is stored on the submarine.
A source told The Sun:’They have been alongside for weeks and sailors do what sailors do.’
A Royal Navy spokesman said: ‘We do not comment on matters related to submarine operations.’
HMS Vigilant has been shrouded in controversy over the years.
In 2017, it was revealed that nine servicemen were thrown off HMS Vigilant after cocaine was found in their blood.
While the submarine was docked in the US to pick up nuclear warheads, they are alleged to have held drug-fuelled parties – with one man having sex with a prostitute in a swimming pool.
A police report allegedly shows he paid £120 for sex then stole the money back from her purse.
It followed four officers on HMS Vigilant being disciplined for having affairs with fellow crew.
That came to light after an alleged affair between its captain Commander Stuart Armstrong, 41, and Sub-Lieutenant Rebecca Edwards, 25. Both have been removed from duty on board.
Another serviceman on the vessel faced court martial after going AWOL and flying to the UK to see his girlfriend. Two more have quit in the wake of the scandals.
It means that one in ten of the 168-strong crew have been kicked out, quit, put under investigation or removed.