Danish missile launch error shuts down busy shipping channel | Material Issues

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The National Maritime Authority of Denmark has warned ships not to pass through the Great Belt Strait.

A missile that was launched but malfunctioned on a Danish submarine has caused the blockade of aircraft and ships in the Great Belt strait, according to the Danish military.

Denmark’s navy said a technical problem arose with the Harpoon missile that boarded the Danish frigate HDMS Niels Juel during a test while it was docked at the Korsoer naval base on Thursday.

Denmark’s National Maritime Authority earlier warned ships against passing through the Great Belt strait, one of the world’s busiest sea lanes and the main access route to the Baltic Sea, due to the risk of “falling missile fragments”.

“The problem occurred during a formal test where the missile launcher was activated and could not be stopped,” the military said in a statement on Thursday.

“Until the missile is deactivated, there is a risk that the missile may explode and fly several kilometers away,” the military added.

On its website, the Danish Maritime Authority said there was a military drill at Storebaelt directly between the Danish islands of Zeeland and Funen.

The danger zone is estimated to be seven kilometers (4.3 miles) from Korsoer at a distance of about one kilometer (0.62 miles) inland and not in the direction of the bridge and link over the Storebaelt.

The operator of the link said there is no danger to the road and the traffic on the bridge.

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