Trident and Related News

June 2015

There have been many reports recently in the media about the warnings issued by William McNeilly about the risks posed by the Trident submarines.


CND’s response: Trident is the single biggest threat to UK security. That is the conclusion of a leaked report from submariner William McNeilly, after serving on board HMS Victorious – which is armed with Trident nuclear
missiles.Able Seaman McNeilly [decided] to expose what he saw as potentially catastrophic safety and security failings which could cause a nuclear explosion in dock in Faslane, Scotland, or near the UK on patrol. The report echoes other investigations into nuclear near-misses such as Eric Schlosser’s Command and Control – which uncovered US failings over the past 50 years which almost caused the deaths of millions in US cities. The litany of safety and security failings in the McNeilly report included, among others:


•ID cards were rarely checked
•Bags and equipment from contractors and crew not searched and left near nuclear missiles
•Nuclear missile compartment used as a gym by crew – and personal portable electronics used (including bluetooth) near nuclear missiles
•High humidity levels in nuclear reactors – with water dripping onto electrics
•Unauthorised access to Top Secret information, including navigation information
•David Cameron and top brass kept in dark about how bad practices and conditions are
•Exam results made up and cheating in crucial tests
•Missile launch tests failed
•High risk of nuclear explosion from malpractice or terrorist infiltration – against which the security practices were risible


Nuclear convoy on Scotland’s roads While the Trident whistleblower, William McNeilly, was being mysteriously moved around Britain last week, a massive nuclear bomb convoy trundled along some of Scotland’s busiest roads. Although the Ministry of Defence (MoD) would rather have kept the movements of both the man and the weapons secret, they were defeated by social media. A fellow sailor posted a photograph of McNeilly in the canteen of Nelson barracks in Portsmouth, while members of the public tweeted when they saw the convoy of more than 20 vehicles driving by Stirling and Edinburgh. The MoD is coming under mounting pressure to explain the fate of McNeilly, the naval nuclear weapons technician who alleged 30 safety and security flaws on Trident submarines. A defence minister is expected to make a statement to the House of Commons in London on Thursday. That same evening the SNP’s former First Minister, Alex Salmond MP, has secured a debate on McNeilly’s allegations in the House of Commons, which will oblige ministers to answer further questions. MoD attempts to “brush it all under the carpet” were “profoundly unsatisfactory”, Salmond declared.