The USS Fitzgerald is an 8,300-ton warship. It collided with the Filipino Container Ship the ACX Crystal. The impact resulted in a gaping hole above and below the waterline. This led to the berthing compartments being flooded. The stricken warship had seven seamen sleeping in some of the compartments. Their fate appeared to be unknown by the crew and it is not understood why this fact was not mentioned during initial information received. The compartments were only reached by divers after the ship had docked. The bodies of the seven sailors who died while sleeping were identified.

This is a serious lapse and needs to be investigated. The news regarding this was reported on CNN International.

The collision

in addition, the cause of the collision also needs scrutiny. The warship is one of the most modern in the U.S. Navy with state of the art navigation and radar equipment yet they managed to suffer collision from a tanker of 30,000 tons. It has not been explained how a warship with such sophisticated detection equipment would have a collision on the high seas. Is it because the NAV equipment was not being properly manned, or somebody was sleeping on the job?

The Titanic

The days when the liner Titanic hit an Iceberg in the North Atlantic are over. At that time the liner had no radar and it hit the Iceberg and sank.

In the present age with modern radar and equipment, it is inconceivable that such a large ship like the Filipino container ship could escape the ship's radar. This is a very important point and needs to be investigated by the Navy.


One wonders if the crew was aware that two compartments had been flooded. In that case, what actions they took to rescue the sailors will need to be revealed.

It was a difficult task but did they make any attempt? The captain of the ship was himself injured and had to be taken by helicopter to the mainland but he cannot be absolved of the responsibility for this terrible accident. The warship which is part of the 7th Fleet of the U.S. Navy will now be out of action for many months.

Avoidable accident

The seven seamen were probably sleeping and had no time to escape as after the collision the seawater must have entered the compartment in a gush. One cannot find fault with the captain of the container ship at this time. As per sea navigation rules, this ship deserved priority of passage.This is codified in the Navigation rules issued by theUSCG Navigation Center and American boating association which says that bigger boats have right of passage. It was incumbent on the destroyer to be alert and get out of the way of the container ship. Unfortunately all the advanced equipment on board the ship seems to have not been put to use, otherwise, the radar should have detected the large ship on the looming on the horizon.The sad part is that seven sailors have lost their life for nothing.