KD Jebat Caught Fire

KD Jebat at LIMA 17

SHAH ALAM: KD Jebat caught fire as she berthed at the Lumut naval base this morning (May 02, 2017). The fire was detected at 2.30am and it was fully extinguished at 5 am. According to the RMN, early indications showed that the fire started during the preparation of food for sahur. The fire was apparently limited to the officer’s mess only.

KD Jebat at LIMA 17

An investigation to determine the cause of the fire will be conducted, says the RMN in its official release. The fire, though small, will continue Jebat’s reputation as an unlucky ship. As you may remember, Jebat was slightly damaged following a collision with a merchant’s vessel off Port Klang, on Jan. 15, 2014.

Her unlucky reputation, however, precedes that incident however though most likely it was because she was named Jebat, the rebel in the famous Hikayat Hang Tuah epic. The other RMN ship named after Jebat was KD Rahmat which was named KD Hang Jebat when she was first ordered in 1966.

A close up of the KD Jebat Sea Giraffe and Thales radars. US Navy pix.

She was renamed Rahmat I was told in an attempt to shake off the various problems suffered by the ship which started during her builder trials and continued to dog her while in service. Despite various attempts to fix her, including an engine change, Rahmat was never considered combat ready and she served as a training ship until her retirement in 2004.
KD Lekiu and KD Jebat sailed together with USS George Washington in Andaman Sea. US Navy picture

Anyhow, following the fire it is likely the Jebat will undergo refit at the adjacent Boustead Naval Shipyard. BNS has the long term maintenance contract for the Lekiu-class frigates, KD Lekiu and Jebat. Perhaps this time around, the navy will decide to award the contract to upgrade the ship’s combat management system.
KD Jebat at LIMA 17. KD Jebat Twitter.

Industry sources told Malaysian Defence that the navy had not awarded the contract as the OEM, BAE Systems, had quoted a much higher price for upgrading the CMS. Therefore, the navy was still looking around for a cheaper solution.
Chess Dynamics Sea Eagle FCEO selected for the Lekiu class frigates.

I was also informed that both ships have yet to be installed with the new electro-optical system already selected in early 2016. It is also likely that other items selected for both ships have yet to be install on them.

GEM Elettronica EOFCS115A, the EOFCS for the Laksamana class ships.

The EOs for the Laksamana class in the meantime, are expected to be install within the next few months. These items if you may recalled were paid for by bartering the retired Otomat missiles.

— Malaysian Defence

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18 Comments

  1. Would it be good to sell off the Lekius before refit is required? Any middle eastern navy in quick need of a pair of Frigates?

    Reply
    Apart from Iran I cannot think of anyone….

  2. The collision incident in 2014 was caused by a commercial ship that had strayed off the Traffic Separation Scheme. The ship made a run for it and a Lynx had to be sent to locate and ID the ship.

    The only alternative to having BAE Systems upgrade the CMS would be to replace it with another one; that would cost more than upgrading NAUTIS. Something that can’t be avoided in the 2-3 years will be replacing Seawolf; MBDA will only continue supporting Seawolf for a few more years. Curious as to why there are no plans to install Mirador, rather than Sea Eagle, as it already has been fitted to the Kasturis. Perhaps Sea Eagle has already been integrated to NAUTIS.

    Reply
    AFAIK, no integration has been done on the Nautis for the Sea Eagle. Anyway if it has been done, the integration work will have to be done again when the CMS is upgraded.

  3. Marhalim…if i am not mistaken KD RAHMAT was renamed as such because of a fire incident while under construction at a shipyard in scotland.it was initially named as jebat.the news was in the papers of that time and on tv news.and Lekiu was contruscted first and launched before jebat to negate the misfortune that had befallen the earlier jebat @ rahmat.

    Reply
    No, Jebat was the one that was constructed first, that is why it has a lower pennant number 29 compared to 30 of KD Lekiu.

  4. @ Marhalim

    Actually lekiu is the older ship, that is why the ship class is called as such. The jebat has lower pennant as he is more “senior” than lekiu in the melaka fables, and as the lead ship of the malaysian navy fleet.

  5. …… – ”Would it be good to sell off the Lekius before refit is required? ”

    Just like how the army will only retire its Model 56s when they are literally falling apart and the RMAF will retire its Hornets when the airframes have no hours left; the RMN will never prematurely retire the Lekius. It also makes no sense to prematurely retire them before the next scheduled refit which is not too far far off as they haven’t reached the stage – unlike the Laksamanas and FACs – where old age or wear and tear makes them prohibitively expensive to run.

  6. P.S.

    Also given that there at present is no certainty that the LCS will enter service on time and no indication the LMS will enter service with the capabilities lost on the Laksamanas and FACs; the RMN will want to hold on to the Lekius; at least until they become to expensive to run or their hulls weaken and the bulk of the systems can’t be supported to due to old age [like the Laksamanas].

  7. Is Jebat RMN flagship? It would be embarrassing for the navy if its flagship caught fire not in action but from cooking breakfast… Replacement for Seawolf would be the CAMM, or VL-MICA, when the time come? But is it sound to upgrade the SAM knowing that the Lekiu-class is not going to be around much longer as the navy proceeds with the 15 to 5 plan, assuming no major hiccups in the future…

  8. “Replacement for Seawolf would be the CAMM, or VL-MICA, when the time come? But is it sound to upgrade the SAM knowing that the Lekiu-class is not going to be around much longer as the navy proceeds with the 15 to 5 plan, assuming no major hiccups in the future…”

    As we know the Seawolf will be maintained for ‘a few more years’ to come, if by the time it is EOSL and the LCSs are not ready then the 2 Lekius will have to use GPMG to fire at any aerial threat… 🙂 Ok, they still have the 30mm gun but the effect is similar.

    Since we already settled for VL-MICA, is it possible to install it on the Lekius, and by the time they are retired move the missle system to the OPVs? I always think that the FFBNW idea of the OPVs is a way to fool our naval service into accepting mere gun boats as fighting ships… I think the cost saving part is good, but unfortunately when the need arises (tension rise, the skirmishes, then war starts.) when can we get the necessary weapon system easily and quickly? Shouldn’t we have the weapon modules ready albeit in a smaller quantity (say maybe 2 sets for 6 ships?) Just my thought.

  9. I wonder if reducing number of CMS would save more money than reducing number of hull types? I always thought CMS was the most expensive part of new ships.

  10. We might be in for a capability gap. It’s likely that support for Sea Wolf will end before the first LCS is completed and operationalised. We will have to go on whatever remnants of support the supplier can offer and we can muster ourselves.

    We won’t do an interim fit of a new missile on the Lekiu. It takes time and money, meaning we will be paying to take the Lekius and then the NGPV out of service for a long time.

    Then there’s the question of how good a fit the missile is to the NGPV’s role and hull.

    I would say the Lekius will have to go on. Even if you fully fund 15-5, you’re not going to have your 6 and 6 additional LCS hulls and your additional NGPV overnight. Meanwhile the yard producing them is not going to have capacity to produce hulls of any class. There are also other RMN and MMEA hulls (such as the FACs) that should be retired before the Lekius because of their sheer age.

    ” I always think that the FFBNW idea of the OPVs is a way to fool our naval service into accepting mere gun boats as fighting ships”

    No one is being fooled.

  11. Fire seems to plaque RMN from Inderapura to mutiara etc. Whether offshore, berthed or drydocked. Why?

    Old ships, no money for maintenance, the high probability of leakages or just carelessness..?

    Obviously the lack of funds for obvious reasons will affect the asset of RMN. A 55 ship navy is probably unattainable. We should do a strategic shift to reduce fleet size to a more compact navy less bases and simpler cheaper,vessels focussed on one or 2 dimensional warfare per boat. Perhaps a navy of 30 boats.

  12. Anon – ”why so many fire incidents? This is embarassing.”

    Cockups happen; not just in the RMN but everywhere. Until we know the full circumstances that led to the fire; lets not pass judgement. One things’s for sure, the CO will come under scrutiny and his career can change for the worst. Regardless of whether it’s his fault or not or even if he was not on board at that time, it is the CO that bears the main responsibility for what happens to his ship – unless of course the fire happened when the ship was in a yard and under the responsibility of the yard.

    Encik – ”I wonder if reducing number of CMS would save more money than reducing number of hull types?”

    True, a CMS does not come cheap and costs can spiral if integration and certification specified by a customer on stuff not already integrated and specified by the OEM. Different hulls, if containing different systems from different OEMs [like what we have now] also cost an arm and leg they all require their own support and training arrangements to be in place.

    Hornet Lover – ”But is it sound to upgrade the SAM knowing that the Lekiu-class is not going to be around much longer as the navy”

    As indicated in my previous post, the Lekius are not going to be retired anytime soon. There is also no reason to prematurely retire them.

    Hornet lover – ”Since we already settled for VL-MICA, is it possible to install it on the Lekius, and by the time they are retired move the missle system to the OPVs?”

    There is already intent to replace Seawolf with MICA. It’s just that there is still time and funding has yet to be approved.

    Hornet Lover – ”I always think that the FFBNW idea of the OPVs is a way to fool our naval service into accepting mere gun boats as fighting ships…”

    No ………. First understand that the RMN wants new hulls in the water ASAP to perform its current day to day peacetime operational commitments. If having new hulls that are not fully fitted out is the way to go about it, that is the price to pay; given that there might not be funds available at the moment to provide the desired capability. Doesn’t mean that the RMN will not continue seeking funding to fully arm these new ships.

    Hornet Lover – ”Shouldn’t we have the weapon modules ready albeit in a smaller quantity (say maybe 2 sets for 6 ships?)”

    In an ideal world yes but we are not South Korea or another country that is in a permanent state of tensions with a neighbour. There is also the question of priorities and limited funding.

  13. What is the status of the second training ship?

    Reply
    It is still at the yard at Lumut. I was told more work was needed.

  14. Shahrudin esa – ”Old ships, no money for maintenance, the high probability of leakages or just carelessness..?”

    It’s a combination of several factors but it’s not as if such incidents are unique to the RMN. Accidents happen everywhere, in every navy. With the survey ship; fault lied with the yard as the ship was the responsibility of the yard when the fire broke out. With the Inderapura the material used to line the bulkheads played a part as did [from what I’ve been told] the initial performance of the fire fighting team.

    Ultimately, despite new advances in warship construction [less flammable materials] as well as how efficient a fire fighting team is; a warship is still a very flammable platform given the fuel, various fluids and other stuff on board. The RMN has a damage control simulator which has also been used to train foreign navies. A lot of lessons were learnt from the Inderapura incident and all ships regularly hold fire/fighting/DC drills.

    Encik – ”Maybe fitting the RAMs on the NGPV would mitigate the loss of Seawolf?”

    Maybe but RAM is still no substitute for Seawolf; never mind MICA. Despite being designed in the 1970’s Seawolf is still a capable missile : very fast reaction time. Granted, both RAM and Seawolf are point defence weapons at best but unlike Seawolf RAM was originally designed [like Phalanx] to be a last ditch defence in the USN and Bundersmarine; in case ”leakers” got past Sea Sparrow, Standard and ESSM; as well as soft kill measures. Seawolf, at least until it’s totally replaced in the RN; was designed to be the primary AD missile especially after Seadart [which had issues with low level targets] was retired.

  15. A quick question to ask. Isn\’t Sea Ceptor the designated replacement for Seawolf in RN? Why isn\’t RMN getting the Sea Ceptor for the Lekiu class then? Of course that would mean operating an additional type of Naval SAM but it would represent a quantum leap in capability and the Lekiu class would have a decent anti-air capability pending full operational service of the LCSs. Also, any reasons why VL Mica was chosen over the Sea Ceptor (assuming the Sea Ceptor was shortlisted or proposed) for the LCS. Is Sea Ceptor much more expensive?

    Reply
    The Sea Ceptor is the SAM already offered by MBDA for the Lekiu upgrade. However as I mentioned in the post RMN has not make any decision on the matter as of now. Likewise the Sea Venom has been offered as a replacement for the Sea Skua.

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