Skip to comments.U.S. Naval ship assigned to Sochi runs aground while refueling and is out of commission
Posted on 02/18/2014 11:20:52 PM PST by cunning_fish
One of the Naval warships assigned to the Black Sea for U.S. protection during the Sochi Winter Olympics ran aground last Wednesday in a Turkish port as it was attempting to refuel.
The port was 240 miles from Sochi.
(Excerpt) Read more at sports.yahoo.com ...
Wow! Our U.S. Navy under Zer0 has turned into a modern day Keystone Cop.
Someone’s about to go from “Commanding Officer” to “Walmart Greeter” at warp speed .
Beat me to it. Strike one Naval career.
But don't Turks have harbor pilots there - people who are well acquainted with all those details of their specific port and can navigate the ship safely? Given that Turks are present in the area since forever, and that they had Black Sea fleet for centuries, I'm sure they have harbor pilots and maintain detailed maps of the sea floor nearby.
Perhaps the US Navy does not require, or does not approve using local pilots? I just can't imagine that the Captain simply took a beeline to the port and never gave it a thought that the depth that is good for a fishing boat may be not quite enough for his heavy ship.
time to update those undersea maps
If the person responsible is one of Obama’s “social experiment” promotions, we will NEVER hear their name. (Alternative: we’ll hear their name and the accident will be chalked up to the person’s reaction to the continued “institutional bias” against them.)
If the person is a long-serving hero, we’ll definitely know their name.
Our entire military is falling apart!
USN ship commanders are the elite of the elite. There is no excuse for any ship master to ground his vessel. If you don’t have confidence in your charts you don’t traverse the area.
Foreign ports are always tricky to navigate. Many times the local harbor pilots just plain suck.
Sure, I hope they are to fix it soon.
This is a stain that never fades.
There is no going back!
Aground like sand bar or rock?
Mixed blessing...rock is easier to pull off of but damages
Sand fairly harmless but Lewinskis the bow
Don’t they have depth sounders and alarms?
From an article the hull is ok, only a propeller was damaged.
Look at the satellite view outside the seawall of Samsun, Turkey, and you will see the shapes of at least a dozen submerged ships. Looks like the approach bottom is a mass of shifting sludge and sunken tankers.
Regardless, the skipper is probably done.
Back when our Navy had far more ships than admirals, an Ensign Chester Nimitz, Captain of the USS Decatur (DD-5) ran aground in soft mud off Olongapo, Philippines in 1908.
A passing boat pulled the Decatur off the next day. Rather than keep his mouth shut, Nimitz reported the incident, which did no damage. He was court martialed.
THAT is character.
Amazing that an ensign could be captain!
Back in the days of one room school houses, graduating high school was sufficient to be hired as a teacher.
How many pregnant “sailors” were aboard?
Yeah, but the average B.A. couldn’t pass half the tests they had graduating from that one-room schoolhouse. Most would be lucky to pass an 8th grade math final from back in the day.
It appears that Zero didn’t want to offend the Russians. He sends ships so that he’s in a position to claim we were ‘prepared to evacuate Americans’ in event of a terrorist attack. But did he send an Amphibious Ready Group with its LHA/LHD helicopter carrier? Nope! He sends a command ship and a neutered “Perry-class” frigate that has no long-range air defense capability. I’m sure the Russians are laughing their butts off. And Obama had better hope nothing happens because the Americans will have to wait for other ships to steam up the Bosporus.
Chester Nimitz survived grounding his vessel. I guess we were lucky he wasn’t automatically cashiered.
Rapid expansion of the Navy after the Spanish-American War and during the presidency of Teddy Roosevelt, and at a time when the only source of officers was the Naval Academy. Nimitz’ class of 1905 was graduated six months early as “passed midshipmen.”
The effects and aftermath of war: My uncle, USNA class of 1941, graduated early in February; the U.S. already was anticipating entry into WWII. He served in both the Atlantic & Pacific aboard the battleship Idaho. My father returned from the Pacific after two years of combat an Army major...at age 24.
He convincingly defended himself and IIRC, proved the charts were wrong, and said that he was following the precepts of his training when he operated the ship the way he did that close to shore.
Pretty rare stuff, indeed for any Navy captain of a ship to get off so lightly even if they could convince anyone of anything.
Years later, when he was often put in the position of making a judgement on the future of someone who had made a mistake, he was known for reasoned leniency if it was called for, and one of his favorite sayings was "Every dog deserves a second bite."
My favorite grounding story, though, is that of the USS Missouri in 1950, because it has everything negative associated with it that is possible except loss of life. A new captain on his first time taking her to sea, stupidty, arrogance, ignorance, bad judgement, politics, money, engineering, embarrassment, a large ship and a monumental grounding.
Heh, on his first time out of Norfolk, VA, the captain decided to take her up to 15 knots in an area he shouldn't have anyway, went to the wrong side of a marker, had multiple people try to tell him he was going to the wrong side of a channel marker and sailed his 57,000 ton ship at 15 knots (at an unusually extreme high tide, for extra bad luck) onto a very, very gently sloping shoal of gooey, slippery solid mud.
There were people looking at each other (who knew the area well) wondering what he was doing, voiced their opinions and when a quartermaster spoke out, received an icy rebuke, the die was cast.
The ship sailed nearly half a mile onto the gooey, slippery mud, and the grounding was so gradual that the first indication they had on the bridge there was a problem was not the decrease of speed, but the overheating of machinery because the intake valves were sucking up mud!
She sat in full view of a major highway for two weeks, and they finally got her off after completely unloading EVERYTHING on the ship that could be moved, waiting for as high a tide as they could. They had 14 tugboats, and divers in the water with water hoses on the bottom using the jets to free mud from the ship's hull while tugs on each side worked in concert to rock the vessel, and tugs pulled astern.
Heh, you all thought of him before I did! Darn, pays to read the whole thread first before I post!
Depends on what race, the presence or absence of breasts, and who they sleep with.
Any one of the three above negates personal responsibility.
Like many here on FR, I served in the Navy and aboard ship (Heavy Cruisers). It is common practice for most naval vessels, be they military or not, to be under the control of a Harbor Pilot (someone who is familiar with the harbor and mooring sites, etc.) who guides the ship to it's eventual anchorage or pier, etc. This particular ship (no size or class mentioned) may have been a smaller vessel which did NOT require the guidance of the Harbor Pilot. We don't have all the facts other than what some journalist wrote. I'll wait and see before blaming the ships captain.
The officer in charge of this salvage operation was Rear Admiral Homer Wallins. As a Captain in 1941, Wallins was in command of the operation to salvage the sunken battleships in Pearl Harbor.
Best post of the day! Thanks.
Whoa!!! Somebody’s gona get fired!!!
My bass boat has enough electronics to keep me from grounding it....this is shear incompetence....it’s one a the most important things the Captain is responsible for and this guy blew it. A grounded vessel is useless. Sylvester the cat can take it out with a rowboat and a can opener!!
And they were better teachers than a lot of our present day educators!!
I’m sure the fact that he was just an Ensign played a big role !!!
Twenty years later, you'd still hear the joke "Join the Navy and see Thimble Shoals".
Really...Sh!t happens...move on to the next port!
So the elderly gentleman walks into work at Walmart and the 20 something supervisor lambastes him for being late. The dressing down goes on for some time . Then the young boss asks the man What did the people at your last job say when you came in late? He calmly replied “ Would you like a cup of coffee Admiral”?
"I have nothing to do with water and operation of ships, but I can easily envision that US Captains may not be intimately familiar with every detail of the sea floor at every rarely visited foreign port. Maps only tell you so much, and instruments at speed can only confirm that yes, you have hit the bottom. - GreysardGiven the many failures of Sochi accomodations (doors that could not close, or would not open, inadequate preparation etc.) it's difficult to dismiss the possibility of Russian psy-ops to break the athletes spirits and make opponents look like fools. Perhaps there was some inadequacy in the details provided to this ship which will be dismissed as a translation error.
I don;t know what they call such an incident in the Navy, but in the AF we would refer to is as a “career ender”.
One Naval commander is getting a new nickname—”Old Leadbottom”—that and any chance of promotion is Gone.
Not every port has a harbor pilot, even then CO is still ultimately responsible and can take back the con. Charts are provided by US sources even for foreign ports and a ship gets a new load out based on their planned ops - I understand they may have digital charts now, but still maintain a paper backup. He didn’t hit a wreck he hit bottom which means it is not a change likely to have been different from the chart. With GPS and Visual observation there is no excuse for running aground. My guess is they were preoccupied by the refuel op and didn’t plan well on their route to avoid the area - luckily the oiler didn’t hit as well.
I correct myself - he only had prop damage which very well could have been due to wreckage shift or new events - we’ll await the results of the investigation.
Hehehe...YOU have never been on a Naval Board of Inquiry!
Thanks! I read a great book on the grounding, it looked like it was printed in the sixties sometime!
I read a book a while back on the salvage operations at Pearl...it was fascinating.
Sounded like the job of diving on the USS Arizona really sucked. Lots and lots of bodies.
Ah! I was having a complete mental block this morning and couldn’t remember the name of the shoal...that’s it!
Has a ring to it, doesn’t it?
hehehe I have processed and represented the command in over 100 admin seps, overseen 200 captains masts, conducted multiple jagman investigations (including one private boat admiralty docked at the base), and written charges for courts-martial (including a nasty murder case).
Was legal o on my first ship and did 6 months with CFAY Legal in Yoko between ships. Best part was working with the Japanese police regarding the SOFA prison.
In other words, I know the process ;)
oh- and I’m not a lawyer ... just a black shoe SWO doing collateral duty.