Frigate, oil tanker collide off western Norway, injuring 7

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Norwegian authorities are investigating a collision Thursday between a navy frigate and an oil tanker that injured several people, officials said.

The 134-metre long frigate, built in Spain in 2009, has a helipad platform on its stern.

The frigate, which recently took part in a major North Atlantic Treaty Organisation military exercise, was aground and tilting on one side, live television pictures showed.

Some 10,000 liters of helicopter fuel from the frigate has leaked into the sea, said Johan Marius Ly of the Norwegian Coast Guard.

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It can take a significant amount of time for larger ships to sink, with some taking up to 15 hours to be fully submerged under water.

According to reports from the rescue crews, seven people have been lightly injured in the collision, and there has been no oil spilled from the tanker, which suffered a lot less damage than the frigate, which was returning from a North Atlantic Treaty Organisation military drill.

Sola TS was loaded with crude oil and was heading to Britain. The tanker, the Sola TS, was slightly damaged but it appears that it did not spill oil. The sites are operated by Equinor (formerly Statoil), one of the world's largest oil and gas companies.

He would not confirm further details as reported by a Norwegian defence and security website, which broke the news that the two vessels could see each other and followed communication protocols on an open channel.

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The £500 million Helge Instad was launched in 2007 and is one of five Fridtjof Nansen-class frigates operated by Norway. A total of 31 countries are participating in the exercises, including non-NATO members Finland and Sweden.

The scripted maneuvers during "Trident Juncture" are based on a hypothetical scenario where troops have to restore Norway's sovereignty following an attack by a "fictitious aggressor".

The Norwegian Armed Forces are leading the recovery operation in close co-operation with the Norwegian Coastal Administration. The focus of the exercise will be on the land exercise in central Norway.

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