Monday, 21 August 2017

10 US sailors missing, 5 injured as warship collides with oil tanker

A US destroyer which collided with an oil tanker tanker thrice its size  around 5.24am in southeast Asia has rendered ten US sailors missing and five injured.

This would be the second serious accident involving American Navy ships in the region in barely three months.

The US 7th Fleet, which is named USS John S. McCain, according to a released statement said, “Search and rescue efforts were launched after the USS John S McCain was involved in a collision with the Alnic MC east of Singapore and the Strait of Malacca”.
The collision with the tanker happened at 5.24am local time as the guided-missile destroyer was heading to Singapore for a routine visit.

Adm. John Richardson, the US chief of naval operations said, “The extent of damage and personnel injuries is being determined,” and that, the incident was being investigated. The admiral wrote on his twitter handle, “Our first priority is determining the safety of the ship and crew. As more information is learned, we will share it.”
However, four of the injured were airlifted to a Singapore hospital for non-life threatening injuries. The fifth injured sailor did not require further medical attention.

In addition to US Navy aircraft, Singaporean ships, helicopters and tug boats were deployed to the area to help conduct search and rescue efforts. Also, Malaysia’s navy chief Ahmad Kamarulzaman Ahmad Badaruddin tweeted that two ships, as well as aircraft from its navy and air force, had also been deployed to help in the search.


President Trump upon returning to the White House responded to reporters’ questions about the accident by saying, “That’s too bad.”

The President thereafter wrote on his twitter handle, “Thoughts & prayers are w/ our @USNavy sailors aboard the #USSJohnSMcCain where search & rescue efforts are underway…”

Also, Senator John McCain has expressed his sadness over the crashed vessel which was named after his grandfather and father who were US admirals.

The Senator wrote in his tweet, “Cindy & I are keeping America’s sailors aboard the USS John S McCain in our prayers tonight – appreciate the work of search & rescue crews.”

The damaged warship has now arrived at the Changi Naval Base in Singapore with a large hole in its side just above the waterline.

The USS John S McCain which was equipped with the Aegis combat system, had been on its way to a routine port visit in Singapore after patrolling in the South China Sea.

Shipping data also revealed that the Liberian-flagged merchant vessel Alnic MC was also heading to Singapore when the ships collided east of the Strait of Malacca at 5:24am local time while it was still dark – a 550 – mile-long Strait which according to analyst is one of the world ’s busiest shipping lanes but is well governed and runs between the Malay Peninsula and the Indonesian Island of Sumatra, serving as a connection for the Pacific and Indian oceans.

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