Page 28: of Maritime Reporter Magazine (January 2018)

Ship Repair & Conversion

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U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Joshua Fulton/Released

The Navy’s Fundamental Problem

Surface Force needs a ? x on navigation, seamanship, watchstanding & leadership … and knowing when to say “No.”

By Edward Lundquist

A series of mishaps at sea has prompt- collided with ? shing vessel Nam Yang as to the weather (the ground) or the sels involved is an open admiralty law ed the U.S. Navy to examine the way it 502 off the Republic of Korea actions of the other ships. But that is issue. The Navy is not concerned about conducts business. The accidents shared • On June 17, 2017, Yokosuka –based not the issue. U.S. Navy combatants the mistakes made by [the other ship]. some similar contributing causes such as Arleigh Burke-class guided missile de- have the best sensors and systems in Instead, the Navy is focused on the per- fundamental watchstanding and seaman- stroyer USS Fitzgerald (DDG 62) col- the world, and are highly responsive formance of its ships and what we could ship, and each of these incidents were lided with ACX Crystal off the coast of and maneuverable. The watch teams in have done differently to avoid these mis- preventable. Japan. Seven Sailors died. combat information center (CIC) and on haps.

The four incidents involved surface • On August 21, 2017, the Yokosu- the bridge should have had the necessary In the Navy, the responsibility of the combatants in the Seventh Fleet area of ka-based Arleigh Burke-class guided situational awareness of what was hap- commanding of? cer for his or her ship responsibility. missile destroyer USS John S. McCain pening, and what should happen next. It is absolute. Many of the decisions made • On January 31, 2017, the Yokosuka- (DDG 56) collided with merchant vessel all comes down to fundamental watch- that led to this incident were the result based Ticonderoga-class guided missile Alnic MC while preparing to enter the standing and seamanship. of poor judgment and decision making cruiser USS Antietam, while anchored Singapore Strait for transit to Sembawa- Chief of Naval Operations (CNO) of the commanding of? cer. That said, no in high winds, dragged anchor and ran ng, Singapore. 10 Sailors were killed. Adm. John Richardson said in his in- single person bears full responsibility for aground in Tokyo Bay. 1,100 gallons of Several investigations were conducted, vestigation that in the case of both the this incident. The crew was unprepared hydraulic ? uid spilled into Tokyo Bay. including one by Secretary of the Navy USS Fitzgerald and the USS McCain, he for the situation in which they found • On May 9, 2017, the San Diego- Richard Spencer, which is ongoing. came to the same conclusion: themselves through a lack of prepara- based Ticonderoga-class guided missile The investigations acknowledge that Collisions at sea are rare and the rela- tion, ineffective command and control cruiser USS Lake Champlain (CG 57) there may be mitigating circumstances tive performance and fault of the ves- and de? ciencies in training and prepara- 28 Maritime Reporter & Engineering News • JANUARY 2018

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Maritime Reporter

First published in 1881 Maritime Reporter is the world's largest audited circulation publication serving the global maritime industry.