7th Fleet Vice Admiral Joseph Aucoin Press Conference – Collision at Sea of USS Fitzgerald…

Commander, U.S. 7th Fleet, Vice Adm. Joseph Aucoin, answers questions about USS Fitzgerald (DDG 62) collision with cargo freight-liner ADX Crystal during a press conference at Fleet Activities Yokosuka.

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[Prepared Remarks – Transcript] USS FITZGERALD experienced extensive damage and flooding after a collision with the Filipino container ship at 0220 local time, 17 June, approx. 56 nm off the coast of Honshu, Japan.

The damage included a significant impact under the ship’s pilothouse on the starboard side and a large puncture below the ship’s waterline, opening the hull to the sea.

The ship suffered severe damage rapidly flooding 3 large compartments that included 1 machinery room and 2 berthing areas for 116 crew. The Commanding Officer’s cabin was also directly hit, trapping the CO inside.

The crew’s response was swift and effective, and I want to point out – as we stand by the ship – how proud I am of them.

Heroic efforts prevented the flooding from catastrophically spreading which could have caused the ship to founder or sink. It could have been much worse.

The crew navigated the ship into one of the busiest ports in the world with a magnetic compass and backup navigation equipment. 1 of 2 shafts were locked.

Because of the tireless damage control efforts of a resolute and courageous team, the ship was able to make its way back to port safely on its own power last evening.

The FITZGERALD Crew responded professionally as all Sailors are expected to fight the damage sustained to their ship. They are known as the “Fighting FITZ” and the crew lived up to that name.

We owe it to our families and the Navy to understand what happened. Under my authority, I am initiating a JAGMAN investigation into this collision, and I will appoint a flag officer to lead that investigation. There will also be a Safety investigation.

The U.S. Coast Guard is to take the lead on the marine casualty investigation.

We recognize that there are other organizations who have equities in this incident, and we expect they will conduct their own separate investigations. More information on any further investigations will be forthcoming.

I will not speculate on how long these investigations will last.

As you are aware, we have found the remains of a number of our missing shipmates. Our deepest sympathies are with the families of these Sailors.

Out of concern for the families and the notification process, I will decline to state how many we have found at this time. We owe that to the families and friends of these shipmates and hope you can respect this process.

We will update you after all notifications have been made.

We have transferred remains to Naval Hospital Yokosuka. The families are being notified and will be provided the support they need at this difficult time. Please keep them in your thoughts are prayers.

Their loved ones are what makes this Navy great, so this loss is something we all do feel. The names of the deceased will be released soon.

Unfortunately we don’t have the details regarding the conditions during their final moments, but hope that the investigation may shed some light on that matter.

At the same time, I want to express my most heartfelt appreciation to our Japanese allies for their swift support and assistance.

Japanese Coast Guard ships and helicopters were the first on scene and our first medevac, the ship’s commanding officer, Cmdr. Bryce Benson, was accomplished thanks to a JMSDF helicopter.

A second medevac was performed for two Sailors with minor injuries. All three patients are alert and under observation at Naval Hospital Yokosuka.

We set up a USS Fitzgerald Emergency Family Assistance Center within hours, and disseminated the phone numbers to their hotlines through social media and Navy websites.

This support center remains open for chaplain and counselor care indefinitely, 24/7, on the Fleet and Family Support Center’s 4th floor.

But to be clear: my sole focus now has shifted to helping the grieving family, crew and friends of the Fitzgerald.

The Navy family comes together during a tragedy, and I want to thank the entire Yokosuka community rallying their support in these difficult days. Fellow Sailors, family members, and civilian members of the Navy team were all out here last night to welcome FITZGERALD home and provide the crew and grieving families with food, blankets, clothes, and emotional support. MWR, Port Operations, NEX, USO, the Chief Petty Officer Mess, and many others pulled together to help out.

I ask all of you to keep the affected families in your thoughts and prayers, and respect their privacy as we work to get them the answers they deserve regarding their loved ones. (link)

 

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222 Responses to 7th Fleet Vice Admiral Joseph Aucoin Press Conference – Collision at Sea of USS Fitzgerald…

  1. smiley says:

    translation ??

    Liked by 1 person

    • LafnH2O says:

      Yada yada yada

      Liked by 3 people

        • Guy-Blanc Déploré says:

          This.
          Strongly suspect either Norks or Islamists making a purposeful strike on the ship.

          Liked by 14 people

        • mcclainra says:

          Good link smiley. My thoughts, exactly.

          Liked by 1 person

        • Dan says:

          I take this with less than a grain of salt, and chalk it up to conspiracy theory. Johnny Sailor’s mom said that the Crystal’s transponder was off. If that’s the case, how were we getting Satellite AIS hits off it (the historical track of the vessel showing the the vessel’s position leading up to and post collision)?

          Liked by 3 people

        • Daniel says:

          I wonder, then what the method and manner of tracking the ships as sea may be if not by transponder? I suspect by satellite tracking… a thing which all war ships would have access.

          I can tell you as a former sailor aboard an aircraft carrier, all manner of tracking data is compiled into a single, larger and more detailed “big picture” which is shared among all of the members of a battle group. (They call it something different now — it escapes me for the moment, but when I was in, it was a battle group)

          Even though civilian ships may rely on things like transponders and local radar, the US Navy does not require this form of tracking to remain vigilant and aware of everything going on around its vessels both surface and subsurface.

          If the assertion of this Navy-mom is true, then we have severe negligence on the part of the crew of the Navy ship as well as a direct attack on the US Navy ship. The reason I doubt the story indicated above is that the sailor reporting to his mother could not have known about the ship directly. That is to say he was not in a location where he could have known. This, if true, could only have come from others aboard the ship and likely those most interested in covering their butts.

          So in short, the story isn’t quite plausible unless this attack were allowed to happen. That warship was more than capable of avoiding the collision so long as it was in communications with the rest of the battle group. The information provided by the Navy-mom is hear-say as her son could not have had direct knowledge of what he reported to her.

          Like

          • Don Monfort says:

            And the alleged sailor and the alleged mom are anonymous sources. We are going to start believing anonymous sources with sketchy tales to tell? This is BS.

            Liked by 2 people

    • They have many Japanese reporters in the crowd so they need to translate what the Commander is saying.

      Like

    • significant impact under the ship’s pilothouse – Kamikaze Philippine captain? sounds like an intentional impact and navy ship could not get out of the way

      Liked by 3 people

      • dilonsfo says:

        I still don’t understand how that destroyer let another ship that close. It should be impossible for another vessel in the open ocean be allowed that close to a military ship on patrol. Something or someone screwed up big time.

        Liked by 4 people

      • OldGal46 says:

        It certainly looks as if the cargo ship plowed right into Fits at a relatively ‘high’ speed, then backed off. SO SAD and very strange!

        Liked by 1 person

        • annieoakley says:

          Looks like it to me also.

          Like

          • Don Monfort says:

            OMG! Don’t you people have a clue about physics. What you are surmising is impossible. From the damage locations on the ships it is obvious that the ships were headed in approximately the same direction on a converging course. Unless the destroyer was going well below its speed capability and was a sitting target, it looks like it was on a heading to cross the bow of the container ship. If the 29,000 ton (empty) had hit the destroyer at 13 knots straight on it would have crushed it like a tin can. And it is really ridiculous to talk about it stopping and backing up Give it a rest. It was a glancing blow probably because the destroyer was possibly just trying to turn away. Look at the damage and think. Not saying this is entirely the scenario, but at least it is plausible. You people need more physics and less resort to baseless conspiracy ideation.

            Like

    • Bob says:

      Bla..bla…why did the offending ship leave the seen…why did it not stop to aid and assist, normal Maritime protocol ? We all know and will find out soon enough. A a minimum an armed boring party should have been dispatched to understand what happened from the Pilipino crew.
      God love everyone of the Sailors, with blessing to their families.

      Liked by 3 people

      • annieoakley says:

        Just because a ship Flies the Philippine Flag means very little. There are few crew on a container ship and the crew may be from anywhere in the world.

        Liked by 2 people

        • Don Monfort says:

          Well, the Mooslims in the Philppines seem like primitive folk but I have spent some time in the Southern Phil. (Mooslim land) and can tell you [off the record] that they have some sort of mumbo jumbo cloaking device that renders 29,000 ton (empty) container ships invisible to radar and lookouts. Bob is right. They should have never let those Filipinos escape. Now we will never know.

          Like

        • LULU says:

          It was reported yesterday that the crew of the cargo ship consisted of “21 Filipinos”. Its home port is Manila.

          Like

  2. sundance says:

    Like

  3. sundance says:

    Liked by 1 person

  4. sundance says:

    Like

  5. The damage far more expansive then what people can see because most of the damage below the water line. 116 in those 2 sleeping. compartments

    Liked by 4 people

  6. mikebrezzze says:

    The rhumb line of that cargo ship looks like 3 commingled EKG’s!

    Like

  7. boogywstew says:

    This is like trying to imagine a collision between a Corvette and a bulldozer in the middle of the Bonneville Salt Flats where they both had drivers … during the day? (BOTH ships had radar.)

    Liked by 4 people

    • Rightlady says:

      I can’t understand why they had no warning! At least those poor sailors could have gotten out. This makes no sense to me.

      Liked by 1 person

      • smiley says:

        question : does humidity have any effects on radar ?

        Like

        • dilonsfo says:

          There are so many redundant systems on a combat military vessel that another vessel should never have been allowed within a close proximity let alone in a collision zone. This destroyer was on a patrol mission. Something very bad happened to all the computers on board or someone screwed up bid time…causing the death of the son’s and daughters of Americans. They know what happened as the CO was on the bridge and, although he is injured, he is able to report. They aren’t answering the big question for a reason.

          Liked by 3 people

          • smiley says:

            or maybe the chinese blacked them out

            Like

          • Trent Telenko says:

            The USS Fitzgerald and the AVX Crystal were in a pea soup fog.

            See Japanese weather agency forecast below:

            WWJP25 RJTD 161800
            WARNING AND SUMMARY 161800.
            WARNING VALID 171800.
            WARNING IS UPDATED EVERY 6 HOURS.
            WARNING.
            DENSE FOG OBSERVED LOCALLY OVER SEA OF OKHOTSK SEA OF JAPAN YELLOW
            SEA EAST CHINA SEA.
            WARNING.
            DENSE FOG OBSERVED LOCALLY OVER WATERS BOUNDED BY 38N 142E 42N 141E
            42N 144E 47N 152E 55N 162E 60N 164E 60N 180E 30N 180E 30N 165E 29N
            150E 38N 149E 38N 142E.
            SUMMARY.
            LOW 1008 HPA AT 39N 146E EAST SLOWLY.
            LOW 1008 HPA AT 45N 150E ENE 10 KT.
            LOW 1004 HPA AT 40N 155E NE 15 KT.
            HIGH 1012 HPA AT 39N 135E ALMOST STATIONARY.
            HIGH 1020 HPA AT 49N 165E EAST 10 KT.
            HIGH 1020 HPA AT 27N 171E ALMOST STATIONARY.
            OCCLUDED FRONT FROM 40N 155E TO 40N 159E 39N 162E.
            WARM FRONT FROM 39N 162E TO 37N 167E 35N 171E.
            COLD FRONT FROM 39N 162E TO 34N 157E 30N 151E.
            STATIONARY FRONT FROM 30N 151E TO 27N 145E 26N 136E 25N 130E 26N 123E
            23N 117E 22N 110E.
            JAPAN METEOROLOGICAL AGENCY.=

            And there was a strong possibility of an inversion layer causing an “Radar Ducting Condition which would reduce radar range to a few hundred yards for surface vessel detection.

            See this image below:

            http://www.splashmaritime.com.au/Marops/data/text/Radartex/Radartex_files/image083.jpg

            Like

          • tellthetruth2016 says:

            If help came so quickly, Then WHY did they NOT chase down and detain the cargo ship that was involved ??? WHY were they allowed to go on their merry way ….. Same as hit and run ….. But our guys and ship was just left there until help arrived instead of the cargo ship involved staying to help …….. Something is “off” with the whole story …. We are boating alot and if a boat runs into or has an accident with another boat, you can’t just drive off ……. You have to wait on coast guard or fresh and game warden to arrive …..

            Liked by 3 people

        • Paco Loco says:

          Yes…ducting of the RF signal. They were too close for that to have impacted the radar. The freighter changed its northeastern course and “doubled back” to collide with the Fitz. Looks like an attack. Where was the Fitz. OOD and the radar alarms so that they could alter course and avoid the collision?

          Liked by 1 person

          • Malatrope says:

            The video of the course that is going around the internet is false. The time has been altered to make it appear that the cargo ship doubled back before the collision, when in fact the course as shown was after the collision. The actual contact apparently occurred when the cargo ship made the initial right turn (to avoid the Fitz?) and it took awhile to get its own damage under control and come back to render assistance however it could. When it was clear they were of little help, they left and continued their journey.

            The change in the timecode was pointed out by a Steven Kuress under this American Thinker post: http://www.americanthinker.com/blog/2017/06/something_is_fishy_about_uss_fitzgerald_story_we_are_getting_from_the_media.html

            Like

      • Howie says:

        No general alarm. Fishy. Who was driving the Fitzcerald? Friend or foe?

        Liked by 3 people

        • Daniel says:

          http://www.public.navy.mil/surfor/Pages/GeorgeWashingtonStrikeGroupWelcomesUnitedNationsMilitaryOfficials.aspx

          The Fitzgerald is part of the George Washington Strike group. (when I was in, it was called a battle group) All of the ships in a strike group share contact and tracking information with the other ships in the group. Other forms of tracking are also mixed in with this “big picture” which, I believe, would include the very tracking information we see on the web site which tracks all of the ships at sea.

          Transponders do not feed information to the satellites which track ocean vessels. That information is used by other tracking systems and those other sources of data are correlated to produce identification to go with the targets being tracked. Targets without identification are still targets.

          Based on some of the historical tracking information we’ve seen may have been confused if/when transponders were disabled. Consider the implications and consider the bizarre hairpin turn made by the freighter.

          Like

    • if the bonneville was intentionally trying to hit the bulldozer – bulldozer cannot maneuver quick enough

      Like

      • boogywstew says:

        Corvette = Destroyer … Container ship = bulldozer … Bonneville Salt Flats = Ocean

        Liked by 3 people

        • boogywstew says:

          To make things even more confusing … there was a Pontiac Bonneville automobile and there were small destroyer type navy ships in WWI and WWII called “corvettes”, which I believe the Chevrolet Corvette was named after. The Ford Mustang was named after the P-51 fighter plane which was named after the horse! I’ll stop now.

          Liked by 1 person

          • livlovely101 says:

            Oh my Boogywstew! That made my head spin!

            Throw in the fake news and the fake course supposedly taken by the “Bulldozer”– and this girl is ready for the fainting couch!

            My brain is starting to hurt…

            Liked by 1 person

    • smiley says:

      marine route of the Crystal.

      Liked by 2 people

    • Msher says:

      Reportedly 2.:30 am. My info is both ships were aware of each other’s presence and in that spot congestion and proximity of ships is normal. The question is about the cargo ship’s manuever. Crazy and unexpected? Normal and should have been anticipated but U.S. destroyer didn’t do whatever was normal for it to do? U.S destroyer was doing something wrong and cargo ship desparately trying to maneuver to avoid collision? Or deliberate ramming? (I personally think that unlikely, but until we know about ship’s crew, who knows?) I have no personal expertise or no opinion about the other possibilities , this is just what I think I pick up from various comnentators. Obviously something was very wrong.

      Like

  8. fleporeblog says:

    I am completely devasted! I pray that the Lord didn’t allow them to suffer. At that time of night, they would have all been asleep. My heart goes out to their families. Father’s will be notified on Father’s Day that their son or daughter died because of this accident. Horrible! Thankfully they will all get proper burials. That may not mean much today, but over the years they will know that the body in the ground or in the mausoleum holds their loved one inside.

    Liked by 4 people

    • deplorabledaveinsocal says:

      It is a tragedy. And we grieve with the thought of the notification of the next of kin.

      This was no accident. It can’t be. Systems and controls failed.

      Liked by 6 people

    • I too can’t imagine. Spent many a night in a sleeping compartment cot at the waterline. Can’t imagine being impaled like this. God Bless them and their families.

      Liked by 11 people

      • Fe says:

        Ditto for my dad. I kept thinking of what happened to the Titanic and the people who drowned before the ship sunk, something that happened over 100 years ago, and I shake my head. I am no expert, but it seems to me that our Destroyer should’ve been able to get out of the way or at the very least a warning blasted to those sleeping to get above the water line on the double … maybe their signals or radar or whatever were being jammed…….hmmmmmm.

        Liked by 1 person

        • Sayit2016 says:

          “or at the very least a warning blasted to those sleeping to get above the water line on the double”

          This is where I have the trouble with this…. no doubt you have seen corpsmen “on the double” …..I keep think there would have been time to get out…….30 second difference can be life saving…..

          Like

    • JC says:

      Yes, Fle. The crux of the matter is that, regardless of cause, this collusion resulted in a tragic loss of life. My heart breaks for the families, I grieve for those sailors lost and their mates, and I pray for comfort and peace for all. God, please cover those impacted and this entire situation with your grace, mercy and lovingkindness.

      Liked by 5 people

  9. fred says:

    when my turn came to do night watch on the very large yacht I worked on I never took my eyes off the radar. If I did and a tanker was approaching an alarm went off so I find it hard to believe all this. A huge cargo tanker just rammed a destroyer that can go 60 knots. On the West Coast there are huge logs and other debris in the waterand the radar quickly identified all that and it was 10 years ago…….

    Liked by 6 people

  10. deplorabledaveinsocal says:

    I have two basic questions: 1) how could this happen? 2) why did this happen?

    Like

  11. The Judge says:

    Give us the names of the people in the pilothouse.

    Liked by 7 people

  12. betseyross says:

    The more we find out the more we suspect that this was not an accident. Thinking the worse. It is still Ramadan.

    Liked by 3 people

  13. mcclainra says:

    “Lil Kim” or mohammedans………….. Plenty in this part of the world, & ramadan isn’t over yet.

    Liked by 2 people

  14. filia.aurea says:

    It’s a miracle more crew weren’t lost, or even the ship herself. Same question as The Judge, who was manning the pilothouse.

    Like

  15. mcclainra says:

    “Among the many lingering questions that should be asked is why was the radar and communication system on the Fitzgerald turned off? Also, why was US navy fleet and related satellite coverage from Hawaii and Guam MIA, and with the ships on collision course, why nobody was alerted especially since 2AM in Japan means it was working hours in the USA. A separate question: what and who was on that Philippine flag containership heading into Tokyo?”

    http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2017-06-18/us-destroyer-nearly-sunk-after-deadly-collision-bodies-seven-us-sailors-found

    Liked by 3 people

    • smiley says:

      …and WHERE are those sailors who were on that (Filipino) container ship??

      still on-board ?

      have they been interviewed yet ?

      are they Filipino ?

      or something else ?

      Liked by 4 people

      • wondering999 says:

        Several years ago (2009?) listened to a presentation where a random fact was mentioned: that container ships are largely staffed by Bangladeshis. Don’t know if this was/is still true, or not

        I do appreciate posts here by people more knowledgeable about ships and the Navy. Helps

        Liked by 1 person

    • kathycovfefe says:

      As far as I know, this statement from the link is pure speculation:

      “Among the many lingering questions that should be asked is why was the radar and communication system on the Fitzgerald turned off?”

      Is it not? I mean it certainly would make more sense if it were true, but we have no idea, do we?

      Liked by 1 person

  16. Craig W. Gordon says:

    This topic of the Fitz accident really has brought out some nutjob comments. There have been some sailors with really great commentary who we should listen to. Way too many nutz comments from people (probably non-service) speculating who shouldn’t.

    Liked by 8 people

    • boogywstew says:

      Your comment is the most egregious and snobby. Maybe in the future you can post FIRST and let the rest of know what is permitted. I’m a US Army veteran so in the future I’ll just respond to US Army anti aircraft matters and forget about the HUNDREDS of books I’ve read about naval history … NOT!

      Liked by 6 people

      • Daniel says:

        I would urge people to speak on what they know to be true and not cloud the issue with speculative information reported as fact. I will not speak with authority on US Army things, but I will speak with authority on Naval systems as I was a sailor on a carrier within a battle group (not called a strike group) and am familiar with the big picture tracking systems which composite tracking of all targets in range of every ship in the group.

        My experience is Desert Storm era, but I don’t imagine things have changed too much and could only have improved since I was last involved.

        So no. DON’T speak on things you don’t know about.

        Liked by 1 person

        • boogywstew says:

          Speculation is fine unless you present it as fact which makes it more like lying … fake news. To ask questions like, “could this have happened?”, “what if?”, “has anyone ever heard of this?”, “did anyone hear this?”, are speculative questions. And to simply ask questions doesn’t break your last rule, “DON’T speak on things you don’t know about.”, does it?

          Liked by 1 person

      • Don Monfort says:

        Craig struck a nerve with boogy. Thou doest protesteth too mucheth, boog.

        Like

        • Sayit2016 says:

          I am wondering do you think it is a coincident that starboard area where the Captain lodged was hit….this is kinda chewing at my brain right now….

          Like

        • boogywstew says:

          It did strike a nerve with me! Almost every post of mine are questions. I love everything about the oceans and the navy and I’d appreciate someone answering my questions. I read and reread the comments from sailors. Just because I was in the Army and not the Navy doesn’t mean that I can’t have a valid opinion about naval matters.

          Like

        • LULU says:

          LIKE

          Like

    • Hey what are the odds of CNN suggesting that a UFO or black hole is responsible for the collision just as they did regarding the disappearance of Malaysian Airlines mh370?
      I may suggest to Rachel Maddow the likelihood that mermaids & sirens conspired with Godzilla to cause the collision within the lesser known Japanese Triangle.

      Liked by 1 person

    • covfefe mariner says:

      ^^^ Ain’t that the truth! ^^^

      Liked by 1 person

  17. FROM WIKIPEDIA – ACX Crystal has been owned by Olympic Steamship Co SA, Panama (a subsidiary of Japanese shipowner Sunford Shipping Ltd) and managed by Sea Quest Ship Management Inc of Bacoor, Philippines since 2008.[3][2] The ship has been bareboat-chartered to Sinbanali Shipping Inc of Manila since 2014,[2] but is reported by NYK Line on June 17 as being actually owned by Dainichi-Invest Corporation, a Japanese ship investment firm.[4] ACX Crystal is a mid-size container ship employed by ACX (‘Asia Container Express’), the intra-Asia container shipping trade subsidiary of NYK Line, the global shipping and freight logistics division of the Japanese conglomerate Mitsubishi.

    In June 2017, ACX Crystal was employed by NYK on its ‘PX1’ (Phoenix 1) intra-Asia trade line linking Japan, Vietnam and Thailand ports. As is common in the container shipping industry, the ship’s cargo capacity is shared by NYK with other lines, such as Mitsui O.S.K. Lines, K Line and other lines.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Daniel says:

      Oh sh!t… that’s part of the answer here then. Any time the Japanese are involved in a major incident, they will deny anything and everything until things get too far out of hand. I have a great deal of personal experience with this and we can also observe this easily as the difference between what was reported during the Fukushima nuclear reactor meltdown at the time and what we know now are very, very different things. At the time I was employed by a Japanese owned nuclear company and was required to remain silent on the issue when it was unfolding. The short of it is that they knew precisely what was going on and what caused it. They didn’t want it reported and that’s all there was to it. The problem is that the disaster could have been handled better with US assistance but they prevented the US experts from helping. This is a personality problem with the Japanese.

      The US and Japanese governments are going to keep a tight lid on this until they can work out a story which does not cast blame on the Japanese businesses or Japanese government. They don’t handle blame particularly well.

      Liked by 2 people

      • It’s called “saving face”…

        Liked by 1 person

      • Don Monfort says:

        So, Dan is already conjuring a complex, devious, dastardly international cover up to save face for the Japanese. Yeah, General Mattis’s DOD is going to do that. You people need to check yourselves. This is serious stuff and your ridiculous speculations are making it into a bad joke.

        Like

  18. Howie says:

    In extremis a general alarm should have sounded to alert crew. Fishy. Very fishy. Who was the OIC? Was he/she a muzz?

    Liked by 3 people

    • Ono says:

      Who were on watch?

      A container ship does not sneak up on a destroyer. Was a round shot over the bow of the container ship?

      Sounds a lot like the Zodiac inflatables that snuck up on and blew a hole in the USS Cole while in port!

      grrr

      Liked by 4 people

      • Howie says:

        I can’t figger it. No way for a US Navy destroyer to end up under the bow of a container ship. No alarm sounded? WHoa!

        Liked by 6 people

        • Ono says:

          What’s to figure out except that a world class fast attack vessel from the strongest Navy in the world, that never floats (always in motion) around in the ocean, that has GPS, Radar, that has a crew that rotates 24/7, Visual personal as well as the most sophisticated Audible warning system, guns galore, and almost always a helo on the fantail; get’s hit by a snail (container ship ) on the high seas…Broadside, with out a round fired, with out a general quarters alarm???///s/sick

          The USS Fitzgerald, could have, and should have reversed full port and full ahead on starboard . WHoa???? And the Captain was…where???

          Liked by 2 people

      • boogywstew says:

        The USS Cole and the USS Fitzgerald are sister ships to the USS Porter which my oldest son served on for 5 years … makes you think … especially on Father’s Day.

        Liked by 1 person

        • Ono says:

          Quite honestly makes me very angry!

          Enough s enough!!! If our military can’t take care of vessel that our tax payer money pays for as well as a crew that our sons daughters/mothers and daughters serve our Nation in the eyes of Liberty !!!

          Liked by 3 people

          • Oldschool says:

            I am with you ono. I have had it up to my eyeballs with every part of our government and our “leaders” who are willing to accept “acceptable losses” of our citizens. Horrible week for us Americans.

            Liked by 4 people

            • Ono says:

              Not for me!!!

              I’m a fighter and I see this as aWIN WIN

              Liked by 1 person

              • Oldschool says:

                I speak of loss of life of my brothers and slain in hospital beds. Fighter or not, I will never call that a good week.

                Liked by 2 people

                • Ono says:

                  Understood.

                  I see it as a wake up call.

                  The best form of deterrence is a having a Military that no one wants to attack. I used to live in San Clemente Ca which is right next to Camp Pendleton (Staging area for ME deployment) and saw all to often the results of a war. Fighting an enemy that does not wear a uniform, straps bombs to their children, and has no value on human life is horrible. The sooner we step it up and end it the sooner the suffering stops.

                  The last eight years (24 years)has been filled with unacceptable instances of attack on innocent people. We give an inch they take a mile.

                  Like

          • Timmy-the-Ute says:

            Sorry but the whole purpose of serving your country is that you are put in dangerous spots. You don’t sit in you home port all the time. That is why we admire our sailors and soldiers for their bravery. They have a job to do.

            Liked by 1 person

            • Ono says:

              Serving in battle…YES

              Getting struck down by warriors that are afraid to wear a uniform, who; only represent a rich Arab/UN/Global bank account. is not service to “MY” country!!!

              My mother and father were officers in the Coast Guard, and Air Force during WWII with my father as a pilot, and post with my mother Coastguard in Hawaii.

              They have a job to do!!!

              To die without cause is not a job!

              Like

      • mikeyboo says:

        That was my question. If the US ship saw the container ship heading towards it in collision mode, why didn’t the US battle ship blow the container ship out of the water?

        Liked by 2 people

  19. aprilyn43 says:

    Yes, there’s a lot not being said, & maybe That’s because of high security.
    We now know, we could have lost a lot more, 116-berthing quarters + the ship.

    Also, I believe there’s still a real possibility this was a terrorist attack. At this time, with Ramadan still going on, it has to be a consideration. ISIS forces have cells all over the Philippians; they have bragged about it.
    Also, the Cargo ship made that strange, sudden, U-turn at high speed, turning it back towards Tokyo, with the collision by the Cargo ship, happened after the U-turn. Then the Cargo ship left & went not to Tokyo, but to its port of destination in the Philippians.

    My heart, thoughts & prayers go out to the loved ones, may the Living God give them comfort & peace. So sad, so heartbreaking.

    Liked by 3 people

    • Daniel says:

      If you don’t mind my asking, what’s the point of this? Just trying to junk up the discussion?

      Like

      • Christine says:

        Hi Daniel.

        Howie has extensive naval experience, and has contributed his vast knowledge to this discussion significantly over the last few days. He’s been the “go-to” for many of with questions, answering with wisdom + patience, for which many of us are grateful. Junking up the discussion, he ain’t!
        Kind regards

        Liked by 1 person

  20. Howie says:

    I don’t see how that destroyer could be rammed by a container ship unless it wanted to. Too many things would have to go wrong. Stay tuned. I want to see the explanation.

    Liked by 5 people

    • Gil says:

      I suppose if it was an inside sabotage or an outside NK threat, they wouldnt tell us anything because they are rounding people up and or getting ready to drop a moab on noko. Jmo…

      Like

  21. youme says:

    Blog Post…
    From a discussion with JJ I think the UTC/JST conversion may have been messed up, or the reported time by the US Navy and Japanese Coast Guard was not representative of the time of the collision, only when the collision was reported. I doubt anyone in the US military would mix up time zones, since they’re very accurate regarding time. The US Navy press release reports the incident happened at 2:30am “LOCAL TIME”, which is Japan Standard Time or JST, and which is UTC+9. The AIS data I scraped from MarineTraffic.com shows accurate to-the-second (or less) data, so that is what I can rely on for accuracy. Could the ACX Crystal have hit the USS Fitzgerald at full speed just before 16:30Z, rather than ~17:30Z as the US Navy said in their press release? I think so. With that in mind, watch the video again. Did the ACX Crystal strike the USS Fitzgerald while on a 70 degree course before 16:30Z, then while on autopilot, correct itself after the USS Fitzgerald was knocked free? If so, it took another hour for the crew to figure out what happened, turn the ACX Crystal around, and return to the USS Fitzgerald – it’s unclear if they even knew what they struck. JJ suggested maybe the time the accident was called in was ~2:30am JST, but the strike had happened earlier. This makes significant sense to me, and explains the “U turn” they performed, especially if you realize the impact was one 30 minutes before the u-turn.

    Those who know my blog will not be disappointed; of course I want to show you the minute-by-minute account of the ACX Crystal’s journey and try and tease out what we can from it. Above you have the AIS data from what I believe covers the entire horrific event, and the ACX Crystal leaving the scene of the collision. Yes. LEAVING the scene, only to return an hour later. I’ll get back to that. I believe this shows that 1) nobody was on the bridge of the Crystal and 2) “Iron Mike” was in controls for a full 15min *after* the collision; see item 1. There have been no reports that any distress call went out until after the ACX Crystal came back at 17:30Z, an hour after the collision.

    Some people hate analogies, but here’s one anyway. If you were in the driver seat of a self-driving car, hit another car, and your self-driving car kept driving along the road… how long would it take you to hit the off button? Well, it took the crew of the Crystal, who I’m positive were not on the bridge, 15 minutes to find the autopilot off button. Either they were very disoriented by the impact, or they weren’t on the bridge to begin with, and had to get up to the bridge in order to shut down the autopilot.

    http://www.vesselofinterest.com/2017/06/mapping-acx-crystals-collision-with-uss.html

    Liked by 1 person

  22. Texian says:

    ‘They navigated back using a magnetic compass..’

    I sure as heck hope they still know how to do that.. damn.. somebody that can’t fly by the seat of their pants has no reason to be in the cockpit.. (This is why I never fly or go on a cruise.. In an emergency I would have to storm the cockpit to make sure the pilot is not shtting in his pants and have to takeover in order to save my own ass – as well as the other passengers lucky or unlucky enough to have me on board.. Just know that any “landing” you can walk away from is a good landing..).

    Liked by 2 people

    • boogywstew says:

      I’m an avid motorcyclist who will cry like a little baby if I have to ride on the back of a motorcycle. I don’t care what anyone thinks, if I’m behind you on the bike, I’m hugging you like a drunk with a cheap burgandy. If I go down … damn straight … the driver is going with me!

      Liked by 1 person

    • SharonKinDC says:

      Read about a year ago, that the USN (at least the Academy) was going back to ensuring traditional nav skills were up to snuff.

      Liked by 1 person

  23. DennisDennis says:

    If, as someone above mentioned, that area is a high traffic point, is it logical that no one would be on the bridge of a large container vessel. Is that normal operating procedure. Otherwise your conjecture seems within the realm of possibilities

    Liked by 2 people

    • boogywstew says:

      If there was no one on the bridge, how was the ship steering all over the place? Can an auto pilot on a ship accidentally home in on another vessel but still … the lack of response on the Fitzgerald is stunning.

      Like

    • annieoakley says:

      IMO no one would be on the bridge of any container at 02:30 unless: Fog, high seas or someone had a particular desire to be there.

      Liked by 1 person

  24. zephyrbreeze says:

    Talk about a Black Swan.

    Like

  25. wondering999 says:

    Searched around for “Container Ship Accidents” and came across some remarkable hits on YouTube. You may want to take a look at “Accidents with Container Ships – Cargo Ship Accidents”

    From the Guardian, Water Transport, January 10, 2015:
    https://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/jan/10/shipping-disasters-we-never-hear-about
    “Worse things still happen at sea: the shipping disasters we never hear about. Eight missing from a cargo ship that sank in the Pentland Firth, another grounded near Southampton – these local accidents remind us that the ocean is the most dangerous workplace on the planet. So why do 2,000 seafarers die each year, and what can be done to make them safer?”

    Like

    • wondering999 says:

      From the article: “These sinkings, fires and bombings are reported, but only in the trade press or – when Filipinos are involved, as they often are, since they provide 25% of world crews – in Filipino media”

      Liked by 3 people

      • Right – trade press is where one can learn about incidents on ships. I learned about piracy – both in the South China Sea and off the coast of Africa – when I was reading the West Coast Sailor, newspaper of the Sailors Union of the Pacific. Up until then, about 20 years ago, I thought piracy had died 200 years earlier. Wrong.

        I doubt we’d get much good info from the WCS on this matter, since no SUP members were involved. But maybe . . .

        Liked by 1 person

    • annieoakley says:

      Container ships are large enough to get a wave under the bow and one under the stern and fold in the middle. In addition the cargo can break free in storms and break open hatch covers. Nothing is invincible at sea.

      Liked by 2 people

    • Texian says:

      “..the ocean is the most dangerous workplace on the planet.. what can be done to make them safer?..”

      Discipline.. harsh in your face training and discipline.. weeds out the wussies and the incompetents..

      Like

  26. Ono says:

    “The crew navigated the ship into one of the busiest ports in the world with a magnetic compass and backup navigation equipment. 1 of 2 shafts were locked.”

    My questions???

    Was the ships control room destroyed upon impact ?

    Haha Magnetic compass in this day and age…GPS…

    So why before you were broadsided by a container ship traveling at slow speed were you unable to maneuver your high speed USS Navy Destroyer out of harms way???

    Hmmmm Barry good question??? Barry Not good

    Liked by 2 people

  27. Howie says:

    Have there been any pics of the starboard side of the Crystal. I can only find port side.

    Liked by 1 person

    • annieoakley says:

      The starboard side of the Crystal will not have a flake of paint disturbed.

      Liked by 1 person

    • boogywstew says:

      Every picture above, except one, are of the starboard (right) side of the ship. The damage was on the starboard side.

      Like

      • annieoakley says:

        The Crystal hit the Fitzgerald on the starboard side (almost amidships) with the port side of its bow.

        Liked by 1 person

        • boogywstew says:

          I was responding to “Howie” and he asked about the Crystal and I mistakenly responded with info about the Fitzgerald. You are 100% correct! Oops!

          Like

      • LULU says:

        Reports I read said damage to Crystal was all on the port side. Looks like a big scrape, though there is probably more to it than that. The anchor was said to have done a great deal of the damage. It looks as though it hit the Fitzgerald at an oblique angle.

        Like

  28. shannynae says:

    I have been thinking about this for a couple of days now. Something isn’t quite right.

    http://www.americanthinker.com/blog/2017/06/something_is_fishy_about_uss_fitzgerald_story_we_are_getting_from_the_media.html

    Like

  29. Giant Ground Sloth says:

    Were there any other U.S. naval ships in the vicinity of the Fitzgerald? From news reports, it sounded like the nearest ships were Japanese coast guard ships. Is it normal for a ship like the Fitzgerald to be 60 miles offshore and by itself? Is it a sign that our Navy is stretched way too thin?

    Like

    • BobW462 says:

      Yes, the USS Fitzgerald is a DDG (guided-missile destroyer). These particular ships often operate independently, and are quite capable and efficient in such a role.

      Like

  30. MK Wood says:

    The problem with all the theories of the ACX intentionally ramming the Fitzgerald is maneuverability. The ACX in no way can outmaneuver the Fitzgerald.

    That leaves the Fitzgerald. Something went terribly wrong on the Fitzgerald. Human, mechanical or electrical, or both. I doubt it was intentional.

    Unlike many, I have trouble finding the conspiracy in everything that happens. And this is one especially. If the ACX was close to the Fitzgerald in maneuverability I could give some credence to some of the theories. But it is not.

    I think this was a tragic accident. The Fitzgerald, being the smaller ship, is required to give the right of way to the larger ship.

    The only thing other than a malfunction I can think of is that the Fitzgerald was doing some type of close drill maneuvers and somebody miscalculated. This could very well account for the “fishy” response by those with knowledge.

    Liked by 1 person

    • boogywstew says:

      Your last suggestion is a very interesting point. It would explain a lot. Maybe the Fitzgerald was investigating the errant course of the container ship and got too close?

      Like

  31. Old Lady says:

    I have no navy knowledge, but the mere fact that nearly 100% of you who do are incredulous that this could have happened more than hints that something nefarious cannot be excluded. We will see.

    Liked by 1 person

  32. aprilyn43 says:

    I don’t know what to make of this, there’s always a lot of conspiracy theories floating around, especially at a time like this.
    But on “americanthinker.com” there an article; I don’t subcribe to them it just popped up from another site, so while I’ve heard of them, I know nothing about them.

    Apparently, they received an email from a mother who’s son is on the U.S.S. Fitzgerald. Her son called her & relayed this to her. The ship is registered in the Philippians, ownership is somewhat a mystery. The son said, the container ship had “neither its running lights or transponder on”. The son said missed being washed out to sea by the blink of an eye; he was apparently on his way to one of the berthing areas that was rammed; & apparently he’s saying the U.S.S. Fitzgerald was rammed.

    Could it be true sure, it’s too early to say. But it would answer a few questions.

    Also, to those who say this can’t be Islamic terrorists, this is still “Ramadan” a bloody, Islamic observance, where Muslims murder ppl to please their god. RMaxan doesn’t end until June 24, 2017; & the body count is already high.

    Like

  33. georgiafl says:

    Two interesting items here: http://www.vesselofinterest.com/2017/06/mapping-acx-crystals-collision-with-uss.html

    1. Chart of speeds/GPS track of container ship.

    2. Reinactment of track and speed:

    3. Watkins surmises the container ship was on auto pilot and did not get off auto pilot for at least 15 minutes after impact.

    Excellent and very interesting – but still doesn’t tell us what happened in the control room and why the very fine instruments of the USS Fitzgerald and highly trained personnel didn’t avoid this collision.

    Liked by 1 person

    • georgiafl says:

      Comments at this site are well worth reading.

      Liked by 1 person

    • MK Wood says:

      “Excellent and very interesting – but still doesn’t tell us what happened in the control room and why the very fine instruments of the USS Fitzgerald and highly trained personnel didn’t avoid this collision.”

      This is the “smoking” gun. There is no way the ACX could have outmaneuvered the Fitzgerald. So until the powers that be tell me otherwise this, sadly, is on the Fitzgerald. I know many do not want to accept this or can not accept it. It does not change reality. Sorry folks.

      Like

  34. Pam says:

    The U.S. Navy has officially released the names of the seven that perished.

    Like

  35. Scotty19541 says:

    I sent President Trump a message at whitehouse.gov:
    Dear President Trump,
    First off congratulations on your many, many accomplishments so far as you strive to MAGA! No worries, despite the fake news horrible coverage We the People know what you are doing and you have our support 100% now …. tomorrow …. and for the next 7+ years!!
    The reason I am writing you tonight is the terrible incident involving the USS Fitzgerald and the loss of out 7 brave Seamen. Know that we are behind you all the way but in my humble opinion this is your greatest test yet. Know matter what happened we will support you and our Navy but we all want just one thing ….PLEASE! …. THE TRUTH! We are so very tired of previous admins lying to us and covering up the truth to put out some spun up bs story! We voted you in on your many promises but the most important one is when you say ‘I will never lie to you’.
    I know it takes time but again, please, all we ask is the TRUTH. God Bless the lost Sailors and their families and God Bless You and you family.
    Sincerely,
    I think you all would agree this is all we want.
    God Bless the 7 Lost Sailors

    Liked by 3 people

  36. William Ford says:

    How does a U.S. Navy warship with the latest modern radars get T-boned? The officers are going to be in deep do-do.

    Liked by 2 people

  37. Plenty of speculation here..
    My theory, or Speculation..
    Is it Possible or Probable.. That the ACX feigned a distress call? Asking for emergency assistance? Upon getting “close enough” It was “rammed”, the Fitzgerald??
    It’s about ONE of the ONLY ways,, I think that this could have happened with a general alarm, (not going off), etc, or “oversight” on the Radar & Electronic Gizmos, (Flir etc). that would let one get close enough to do this Dastardly deed..
    Just Speculation though…

    Like

    • BobW462 says:

      Right now, everything is speculation. However, even if Fitzgerald was responding to a distress call, it would not do so by pulling right up alongside the Crystal, and there would have been a call to GQ, which would have alerted and “activated” the entire crew.

      Based upon current reporting, the Fitzgerald crew didn’t seem to expect any type of interaction with another vessel when the collision occurred.

      Liked by 2 people

    • Don Monfort says:

      I think it was the Amish, but that’s just speculation. I am going to stop reading this nonsense. It’s making me sad. Conservatives are supposed to be smarter. Many of you are making a silly soap opera out of a very serious incident.

      Like

  38. Christine says:

    I mentioned this 2 days ago, but it’s worth repeating since the general consensus among our naval experts here, is there’s something fishy going on.

    We know technology now exists to hack aircraft systems, taking control of a plane remotely.

    Well, from 17-19 February 2017 the US Navy hosted “Hack-Our-Ship” in Texas for highly skilled technology + coding non-military experts, inviting them to hack into “Boat In A Box”. It’s a complex software system designed to simulate the systems used to control Navy fleets.

    The software contains various communication interfaces used at sea, including the various automatic systems used to prevent collisions + weather satellite radio systems.

    https://defensesystems.com/articles/2017/03/13/hacknavy.aspx?m=1

    So, just 4 months ago the US Navy revealed its technology to outsiders, inviting hackers to hack the system used to prevent collisions, and then this inexplicable collision happens? Things that make you go hmmmm…..

    Like

  39. georgiafl says:

    Interesting comment:
    “you assume that someone on the Fitz would “immediately” radio and report the collision. They would not, the ships first priority would have been sounding general quarters to set condition Zebra(all watertight hatches secured) and begin damage control operations to keep the ship afloat. Once the ship was stabilized, flooding contained, etc only then would the Fitz have attempted to radio in to report the collision. Whether the collision took place at 1:30am or 2:30am local really does not make much difference on the Fitz, because the majority of the crew(including the majority of the senior officers and enlisted) would be in their racks asleep, with only watch standers up.

    Considering that it appears that the Fitz was holed below the waterline, the crew did a rather amazing job to keep the ship afloat, with the loss of only 7 sailors. I spent 10 years in the USN,and was a qualified helmsman and Lee Helmsman.”
    Link

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lee_helm#Lee_helm_on_U.S._Naval_Vessels

    Helmsman and Lee Helmsman on duty:

    Like

    • LULU says:

      How nice when the experienced posters show up!

      Liked by 1 person

    • georgiafl says:

      Another comment at VOI (see link above)

      “Regarding the Crystal continuing at previous speed after collision for 15 minutes, it should be kept in mind that merchant vessels of this type do not have direct engine controls on the bridge and frequently do not have anyone on watch in the engine room at night. The engineering department generally needs or wants 15-30 minutes notice if they will have to stand by for orders from the bridge for speed changes or maneuvering. Just wait until the fully autonomous ships are here.”

      Like

  40. Tony Stark says:

    Somebody fell asleep at their post. They should have detected that merchant ship on radar and steered clear of it.

    Like

  41. Tom Ray says:

    Was this caused by a youtube video? Nakoula Basseley Nakoula is out of prison…Hmmmm

    Like

  42. georgiafl says:

    Another comment at the Vessel of Interest blog:

    Unknown19 June 2017 at 14:28:00 GMT-4
    “Great analysis. My guess is that you could start it about 10 minutes earlier when the Crystal was sailing at 18 knots on a course of 90 degrees (approx.). At this time it would have appeared to the Fitz that she would clear Crystal by a significant margin. Crystal then turns about 20 degrees north to clear Tishima Island, probably an automatic turn based on a proximity to a waypoint if the rest of your analysis is correct. This brought her onto a collision course with the Fitzgerald. Shortly afterwards Fitz turned to port to avoid the collision, delaying the inevitable for a few minutes. Earlier recognition of the turn by the Fitz might have avoided the accident. However no automatic system would have predicted the accident until after the turn by Crystal was completed.

    Normally the vessel on the right has the right of way. (Colregs rule 15). That does not give them the right to turn into the path of the Fitz at the last minute unless there is an obstruction or other special situation. To avoid collisions, both vessels may maneuver.”

    http://www.vesselofinterest.com/2017/06/mapping-acx-crystals-collision-with-uss.html

    Like

  43. Coastie Paul says:

    Good grief, there are some ignorant comments on this thread.
    If you’re not a sailor/deck watch officer/ officer in charge of a navigational watch, please don’t comment. It doesn’t matter what equipment the destroyer had. Human error is the cause. Looking out the damn window is the best collision avoidance tool one has. This will come down to human error with the destroyer carrying most of the fault. They were more than likely the give way vessel. Collisions between ships are not unprecedented.
    Props to “youme” for his/her comments.

    Like

  44. georgiafl says:

    Comments @ VOI blog continue:
    http://www.vesselofinterest.com/2017/06/mapping-acx-crystals-collision-with-uss.html

    For search page for 20 June.

    Latest comment:
    Stan Rooker20 June 2017 at 09:14:00 GMT-4
    “Thoughts about radar, relative position of the ships, Crystal’s course change and detection of the course change.
    One thing that hasn’t been addressed (at least I haven’t seen it) is the physical proximity of the two ships. Times and speeds have been identified but not the physical distances between the two ships. Obviously, no information about the actual lat/long for the Fitzgerald, however, we can make some assumptions about relative positions.
    As reported, the speed of the Crystal was at 18+ kts. For discussion, assume the Fitzgerald was making ~12 kts. Crystal made a small (~15 degrees) course change 10-15 minutes before the collision. The Crystal was near, and closing on, the Fitzgerald.
    To illustrate (using the speeds identified above), if the two ships were on parallel courses before Crystal changed course, the relative speed differential was about 6 kts.
    If the collision occurred 10 minutes after Crystal changed course, distance between the two ships would have been roughly 1 nautical mile; if the Crystal’s course change occurred 15 minutes before the collision,
    distance between the two ships would have been about 1.5 nautical miles.
    If the Fitz’s radar operator had the range on his PPI set to 25 miles, it is unlikely he would notice the course change on his scope, the change in location/displacement of the ‘blip’ located toward the center of the scope would be very small.
    It would appear the Crystal was very, very close to the Fitzgerald when the course change was made. I’d suggest this also contributes to the theory that there were no look outs on the Crystal and the bridge basically unmanned.
    At 1 to 1.5 miles distance from another ship, it would not be prudent to change to a collision course.”

    VOI has videos of movement of Crystal, interactive charts and lots of comments by Coastie Paul approved former naval officers and sailors. ;->

    Like

  45. georgiafl says:

    Correction: For latest comments search VOI page for 20 June.

    Like

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