HMCS Whitehorse

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HMCS Whitehorse.jpg
HMCS Whitehorse (MM 705)
Career (Canada)
Name: Whitehorse
Namesake: Whitehorse, Yukon
Operator: Royal Canadian Navy
Builder: Halifax Shipyards Ltd., Halifax
Laid down: 26 July 1996
Launched: 24 February 1997
Commissioned: 17 April 1998
Homeport: CFB Esquimalt
Identification: MM 705
Motto: Audentes Fortuna Juvat (Fortune assists the daring)[1]
Status: Active in service
Notes: Colours: Blue and white[1]
Badge: Azure three bands wavy Or over all a horse forcene Argent.[1]
General characteristics
Class and type: Kingston-class coastal defence vessel
Displacement: 970 tonnes
Length: 55.3 m (181.43 ft)
Beam: 11.3 m (37.07 ft)
Draught: 3.4 m (11.15 ft)
Propulsion: 2 × Jeumont DC electric motors
4 × 600VAC Wärtsilä SACM V12 diesel alternators
Speed: 15 kn (27.78 km/h)
Range: 5,000 nmi (9,260.00 km)
Capacity: 47
Complement: 31 to 47
Sensors and
processing systems:
Kelvin Hughes navigation radar (I-band)
Kelvin Hughes 6000 surface search radar (E-F band)
Global Positioning System
A towed high-frequency sidescan sonar
Remote-control Mine Hunting System (RMHS)
Armament: 1 × Bofors 40 mm 60 Mk 5C cannon
2 × M2 Machine Guns

HMCS Whitehorse is a Kingston-class coastal defence vessel that has served in the Canadian Forces since 1998. Whitehorse is the sixth ship of her class which is the name for the Maritime Coastal Defence Vessel Project.

Whitehorse was laid down on 26 July 1996 by Halifax Shipyards Ltd. at Halifax and was launched on 24 February 1997. She was officially commissioned into the Canadian Forces on 17 April 1998 and carries the pennant number 705.[2]

She is assigned to Maritime Forces Pacific (MARPAC) and is homeported at CFB Esquimalt.


The Kingston-class coastal defence vessel was conceived to use commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) equipment and construction techniques in a ship designed to military specifications. The construction of the design required the building of partially outfitted steel block units, which were assembled into larger blocks and those blocks were integrated into the ship. The decks were assembled upside down with pre-outfitting of the underside of the deck prior to installation on the ship. The ship is outfitted with a degaussing system from Power Magnetics and Electronic Systems.[3]

Kingston class vessels are designed to carry up to three 6.1-metre (20 ft) ISO containers with power hookups on the open deck aft in order to embark mission-specific payloads.[4]

Armament and Sensors[edit]

Kingston-class vessels are outfitted with a Bofors 40 mm 60 mk5C rapid fire gun, and two 12.7mm machine guns. The ships are equipped with one of three modular mine countermeasures systems: the deep sea Thales MMS mechanical mine sweeping system, the route survey system or the Sutec remotely operated vehicle (ROV) mine inspection system.[3]

The navigation equipment installed in Kingston-class vessels are a Kelvin Hughes I-band navigation radar and a global positioning system. The surface search radar is the E to F-band Kelvin Hughes 6000.[3]


The ship is equipped with four main Wärtsilä UD 23V12 diesel engines which are coupled to four alternators (600 V AC). Two Jeumont electric motors (±740 V DC) provide power to the two LIPS Z-drive azimuth thrusters which are fitted with fixed-pitch reversing propellers. The propulsion system provides 15 knots (28 km/h) maximum continuous speed. The range at the economical cruising speed of 9 knots (17 km/h) using two engines is 5,000 nautical miles (9,000 km) with a 20% margin in tank capacity. Mechanical minesweeping is carried out at 8 knots (15 km/h). The crash stop length is five ship lengths from a speed of 15 knots (28 km/h).[3]

Operational history[edit]

Whitehorse arriving in Portland, Oregon during 2011

As part of Operation Caribbe, Whitehorse deployed to the eastern Pacific Ocean with her sister, HMCS Nanaimo in February 2014.[5] In June 2014, Whitehorse took part in the RIMPAC 2014 naval exercises off southern California.[6] However, she was ordered to return home after allegations of misconduct, including sexual misconduct, occurred while docked in San Diego.[7] Whitehorse is the first RCN warship to be withdrawn from an exercise due to "reasons of conduct".[8] The incident contributed to the imposition of tighter restrictions on the availability of alcohol on board RCN warships which were announced in December 2014.[9]

In February 2015, Whitehorse was deployed as part of Operation Caribbe.[10]


  1. ^ a b c "Volume 2, Part 1: Extant Commissioned Ships - HMCS Whitehorse". Department of National Defence and the Canadian Forces. 7 July 2006. Retrieved 28 July 2014. 
  2. ^ Macpherson, Ken; Barrie, Ron (2002). Warships of Canada's Naval Forces 1910-2002 (3 ed.). St. Catharines: Vanwell Publishing Ltd. p. 304. ISBN 1-55125-072-1. 
  3. ^ a b c d "Kingston Class Coastal Defence Vessels, Canada". Retrieved 15 March 2014. 
  4. ^ Saunders, Stephen (ed.) (2008). Jane's Fighting Ships 2008–2009. Jane's Fighting Ships (111th ed.). Surrey: Jane's Information Group. p. 95. ISBN 978-0-7106-2845-9. OCLC 225431774. 
  5. ^ Pugliese, David (13 February 2014). "Her Majesty's Canadian Ships Nanaimo and Whitehorse On Their Way To Operation Caribbe". Ottawa Citizen. Retrieved 28 June 2014. 
  6. ^ Pugliese, David (26 June 2014). "Full list of participating forces and military assets for RIMPAC 2014". Ottawa Citizen. Retrieved 28 June 2014. 
  7. ^ Pugliese, David (15 July 2014). "Navy ship ordered back to Canada from California due to personal misconduct from sailors". National Post. Retrieved 15 July 2014. 
  8. ^ Chase, Steven. "Navy to investigate allegations against HMCS Whitehorse sailors". The Globe and Mail. Retrieved 30 July 2014. 
  9. ^ Pugliese, David (12 December 2014). "No more drunken sailors? Navy brings in tougher booze policy aboard ships". Ottawa Citzen. Retrieved 13 December 2014. 
  10. ^ Pugliese, David (2 March 2015). "Four Maritime Coastal Defence Vessels on patrol on OP Caribbe". Defence Watch (Ottawa Citizen). Retrieved 3 March 2015. 

External links[edit]