Staff, Want China Times
16 May 2015
The Submarine Academy of the People's Liberation Army Navy has trained a total of 70,000 submarine crew members for China since its establishment in Qingdao in Shandong province in 1953, Hong Kong-based newspaper Ta Kung Pao reported on May 14.
The academy is currently the only military academy dedicated to training professional submarine crew members in Asia. It is responsible for the training of common sailors, noncommissioned officers, weapon crews and even deputy commanders for the PLA Navy. They learn how to engage in military operations
underwater and how to operate or command different types of submarine.
Before entering the academy, cadets must undergo strict cultural, psychological and physical exams. "Although all cadets taking the exams are handpicked by the academy, there is still a 10% failure rate," said Zhang Liyan, the chief of the Submarine Academy's political section. After they pass the exams, they have to spend three months in the army to undergo basic training. They then receive professional training for eight months to become submarine crew members.
One of the most important lessons that Chinese cadets learn at the academy is how to escape from the submarine through the torpedo tubes. This lesson has attracted the attention from various Western nations because China is currently the only nation that trains its submarine crews in this method, according to Ma Qinglong, the deputy head of the academy's training department. A submarine crew must learn every survivial method even if he may not use it for his entire life, according to Ma.