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Old 28-01-2019, 09:20   #61
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Re: USNavy Report on Fitzgerald Collision.

The link below is to an article detailing the recent t-bone collision of a tanker with an anchored cable and pipe laying ship, that resulted in the anchored ship being holed, capsized and I suspect has now sunk. Fortunately, all the crew are safe and uninjured. The video shows the course taken by the tanker, it is almost as if it was intentionally aiming for the anchored ship.

When I see such, I can't help but say in my mind: "You only had one job!!!!"

Given the apparent failure, I'm thinking that there needs to be redundancy such that it requires at least two persons acting independently to fail in navigating the ship. Leaving the task to just one person puts too much reliance on an individual. All lives on board are at risk.

I encourage you to watch the video of the AIS animation, it is rather stunning.

https://gcaptain.com/cable-layer-sta...off-singapore/
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Old 28-01-2019, 10:14   #62
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Re: USNavy Report on Fitzgerald Collision.

The same thing happened a few months ago in the Med:

Cargo ships runs into anchored ship
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Old 28-01-2019, 11:39   #63
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Re: USNavy Report on Fitzgerald Collision.

Here are a couple of comments from ex RN types on another forum discussing the same report which I found interesting.

The US and RN do things differently but there is still the same thread of professionalism for how a CIC (USN) or Ops Room (RN) runs.

It is clear that a failing in leadership from bottom up occurred here. The statement that the CIC was a mess, with little care for the environment people worked in is clearly a failing from Leading Seaman upwards (USN PO1 and up, Army Cpl and up). What were the SNCOs doing to allow that space to become physically trashed. If that is happening it is easy to understand that any form of leadership will be weak and ineffective. I know the teams hate it when they are having to scrub out and clean up but it is a basic building block of the need for order in the operation of the Ops Room. If the Ops Room is a **** tip then you are saying that the little things don't matter. But the bar for the little things starts to creep up. Why bother tidying up the books and papers, I mean who needs those extra seconds to route around to find information. Stateboards - bound to be correct from theist watch. Cups on the consoles, why do they treat us like children - its not like I will knock it over and flood the computer with cheap coffee. Who cares if small food scraps fall on the floor and are left to go mouldy.

Then the bar creeps up - joking maybe be but back pocket button today, submarine hatch tomorrow.

When ever you visited a ship you got a feeling of how she operated. Some ships had strict working patterns and delivered, some didn't. Some had a mature approach to work and succeed some didn't.

The report demonstrates that leadership was lacking and as a result the accident happened.

2) I'd bow to your 1st hand experience every time, but isn't it a "top down" failure? The CO sets his standards and directs his DOs to ensure the ship's company performs to them. I can't imagine any PWO tolerating graffiti on ops boards, let alone gash strewn around the Ops Room etc. The same goes for every DO compartmental/departmental inspection - reinforcing the skipper's standards, keeping on top of basic hygiene as well as equipment maintenance. The LHs doing their job but taking direction (or being shat on) from above.

I've seen reports of other lapses throughout the 7th Fleet. If pride in the ship and morale has plummeted this far it goes well beyond re-training. I'd be surprised if it didn't need a top down cull and a whole cultural/ethos overhaul.

3) Yes and no. Good Leading Hands and Petty Officers are the watch leaders and on a daily basis should have been stamping down in this. The state of the ops room reflects on them. The failing in training and equipment is very much from the top. You then have the worse of all worlds. The big and small things are being ignored.

4) Don't think I ever encountered an ops room in "**** state" in the RN. Cruising watch cleaning responsibilities are promulgated and strictly adhered to. If various bits of info were not on any of the stateboards then the Ops officer would have been carving his way to me instantly for an explanation!

5) This clip is a pretty good example of a Type 23 frigate Ops room environment during "defence watches", that I was accustomed to: (Video here). Note how "calm" it appears - despite what may be going on in the background. I crosspolled onto the Nimitz during Gulf ops for a few weeks and the contrast in attitudes was startling. A fisherman suddenly changing course caused no small amount of excitement!

6) I see that the Chief of the Boat was also sacked in very short order.

Having been obliged to work with Murrcans in the past, they were-for the most part-good people.

However, I was left with the abiding impression that any 'senior enlisted' that had 'Command' in front of their rank:

1. Couldn't.

2. Didn't really understand the definition of the word.

7) Whilst it’s always been fun to abuse US Forces for just being “****”, context is king. This inspection was done about 48 hours after the collision. The reason there were piss-bottles everywhere was due to the fact the sewage system had failed during the collision. From some reports, there were only one set of heads for the entire ship.

Likewise, HMS NOTTINGHAM and HMS ENDURANCE were pretty foul after their incidents.

There’s lots to criticise the USN about over this series of collisions, but the state of the Ops Room really isn’t one of them.

8) Comparing the RN to the USN is like comparing the UK to the US. We’re different - don’t let a common language lull you into thinking we’re two navies with slightly different accents...

...and yes, I know the RN do have their own faults and mishaps as well. The arrangement on the QE Carrier's with RN or RAF F35's embarking with U.S Marine F35's will be interesting to see over the next few years.
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Old 28-01-2019, 12:10   #64
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Re: USNavy Report on Fitzgerald Collision.

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house is but a boat so poorly built and so firmly run aground no one would think to try and refloat it.
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Old 31-01-2019, 06:40   #65
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Re: USNavy Report on Fitzgerald Collision.

I hv been following this thread since early days but what did i miss? If the Crystal was the stand-on vessel why would the owners have paid one cent? Secondly I suspect that the Fitz tried to accelerate in order to cross and clear the bow of the Crystal but i have seen nothing in the reports that refers to any data on speed. Perhaps such an admission by the USN would confirm what the rest of us have already concluded, that the Fitz knew it was in trouble and attempted to accelerate themselves out of it and thereby incorrectly crossing the Crystal who had the right of way.

I know the rules that even if you are the stand-on vessel you should still take avoiding action if collision seems likely. Was the Fitz not using AIS in receive mode only, if not in transmit as well? Surely the CIC would have a fancy form of ARPA for their radar even if AIS was considered a bit too low-tech for a destroyer. Clearly the Fitz was not transmitting on AIS bec otherwise the Crystal could have called them directly on the VHF instead of having to use a signalling light. Odd that they waited until they were within 1 nm of each other before the Crystal did anything but maybe this is more standard in congested waters.

"If its grey, stay away" is exactly what i did a few months ago in bay of Cadiz/Spain even though we were under sail and had right of way. It was a USN carrier of some sort (enormous!) but the boat i was on had no AIS bec i would usually call the other vessel on the VHF in such a situation rather than being forced to turn to port which was the only solution under the circs (apart from stopping or doing a complete circle).
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Old 31-01-2019, 07:26   #66
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Re: USNavy Report on Fitzgerald Collision.

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Originally Posted by SaltyMetals View Post
I hv been following this thread since early days but what did i miss? If the Crystal was the stand-on vessel why would the owners have paid one cent?
Rule 2(a) because they didn't follow Rule 5, or apply rules 6 and 7, or comply with rule 8 and probably a shed load of others.

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Old 01-02-2019, 17:35   #67
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Re: USNavy Report on Fitzgerald Collision.

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even though we were under sail and had right of way.
A) "Right of way" does not exist in the International Rules; and

B) as I recall the Bay of Cadiz has a fairly narrow deep-draft channel, which I assume the "enormous" carrier would be restricted to - and rule 9 would be in effect, would it not?
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Old 02-02-2019, 00:05   #68
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Re: USNavy Report on Fitzgerald Collision.

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A) "Right of way" does not exist in the International Rules; and

B) as I recall the Bay of Cadiz has a fairly narrow deep-draft channel, which I assume the "enormous" carrier would be restricted to - and rule 9 would be in effect, would it not?
Well, not really a deep channel. Most of the bay is 10-14 metres but there is a large area which is only 6-9 metres which the carrier clearly went around but at the time i was focusing on collision avoidance rather than the depth of the bay. Later that day i was in a local sailing club and noticed that there was a warning for large vessels having a priority along a marked channel but nothing was shown on my Navionics chart. The carrier went into the naval base at Rota.
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Old 02-02-2019, 07:26   #69
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Re: USNavy Report on Fitzgerald Collision.

The larger carriers draw over 11 m. Do you recall seeing a cylinder up the mast?

A curious thing about US carriers, is that the Captain is a fly-boy and the second-in-command is a SWO (surface type) to provide ship-driving advice to the CO.
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Old 02-02-2019, 09:54   #70
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Re: USNavy Report on Fitzgerald Collision.

no, don't recall seeing a cylinder up the mast . There might have been one there, don't know. Tidal range is about 2 metres so probably it come into the port at HW.
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Old 02-02-2019, 10:11   #71
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Re: USNavy Report on Fitzgerald Collision.

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One thing I read about, and it is prevalent in other services as well, is that training is now being conducted for officers by DVD courses instead of being mentored on site.



I also read in these reports that the officer on watch was having a cat fight with the officer in charge of the CNC downstairs so radar reports weren't being communicated. There was also evidence of gym equipment on the bridge (barbells) and bottles of urine. This indicates to me a command climate that was dangerous. I also inferred from some of the other incidents (not particularly the Fitzgerald although it could be a factor given the 2 female officers who refused to talk to each other even while on watch) is the affirmative action promotions of under-qualified officers.



This is a problem which was developed after DoD switched to DOPMA in response to perceived institutional racism after the Vietnam conflict. The promotion scheme is supposed to select the best qualified officers based on fitness reports (OER's). This is done by an impartial panel of officers who review a given year group and individually rank them after reviewing their records. This is then sorted to assemble a list based on the composite rankings in the sort of the pool being examined. A cut-off line is established above which the officers are selected for promotion. However, a second round of rankings is conducted examining for racial and sexual representation. If not enough minority officers are in the select for promotion group then they go down the list and pull up minorities from the non-select pool based on the sort. This goes on until the correct ratio (whatever that may be at the time) is achieved. So some officers who are fully qualified for promotion are not selected so that minority officers which are not the best qualified can be promoted. There is a 3rd sorting after all of that where Congressmen take a look at the lists and if no officers from their state or district are promoted again someone less qualified is pulled up into the selected list and more good officers are denied promotions. Failing to be selected is referred as being passed over and if this happens twice the officer becomes non-promotable and is usually eliminated from the service. Very rarely an officer may make it based on a third look (3 or more years later) but it is extremely rare. No officers are permitted to remain on active duty in a non-promotable status.



I know it sounds nuts but this is the way it is in the military. If you add in the rating officer reports who are also worried about looking racist or sexist then you have positive bias even before the promotion boards meet. I am not saying that minorities can't do the job but I am saying that excellent officers are generally eliminated. Add in the additional factors mentioned earlier like ring knockers (graduates of the military academies who are always selected), children of politicians and senior officers, etc. and you get a mix of officers who are not leaders. Leadership is actually negatively selected as the officer is generally perceived as being a risk taker or too aggressive. Officers are now more likely to be selected for being good committee members and not being leaders. Sycophants also rise to the top as well. Someone like Patton would never get past the rank of O-3 (Lt in the Navy or Captain in the Army) as he would be too much outside the box for senior leaders UNLESS he was connected.


Your second and third reviews simply do not happen, at least in the US Coast Guard. With that said, the Board receives guidance from senior leadership that might give slight preference to some technical specialties. If the service is desperate for engineers with afloat experience and two individuals are of equal caliber, it might be acceptable to ranks the engineer higher on the list. The number of officers in the promotion "zone" is published before the Board meets and officers are promoted in the order they are ranked.
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Old 02-02-2019, 10:18   #72
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Re: USNavy Report on Fitzgerald Collision.

Quote:
Originally Posted by SaltyMetals View Post
"If its grey, stay away" is exactly what i did a few months ago in bay of Cadiz/Spain even though we were under sail and had right of way. It was a USN carrier of some sort (enormous!) but the boat i was on had no AIS bec i would usually call the other vessel on the VHF in such a situation rather than being forced to turn to port which was the only solution under the circs (apart from stopping or doing a complete circle).
Staying away from commercial traffic in confined waters is not only common sense but good seamanship! In some countries like Denmark and the UK, sailing boats are very good at this. In some other countries not, don´t ask me why.

And - no - you had definitely no "right of way". That does not exist. The aircraft carrier was obviously hindered by its draft and probably also by its ability to manoeuvre. And - probably there is an exclusion zone around the carrier. Probably posted in local regulations.
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Old 02-02-2019, 10:19   #73
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Re: USNavy Report on Fitzgerald Collision.

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Originally Posted by bail-me-out View Post
Here are a couple of comments from ex RN types on another forum discussing the same report which I found interesting.

The US and RN do things differently but there is still the same thread of professionalism for how a CIC (USN) or Ops Room (RN) runs.

It is clear that a failing in leadership from bottom up occurred here. The statement that the CIC was a mess, with little care for the environment people worked in is clearly a failing from Leading Seaman upwards (USN PO1 and up, Army Cpl and up). What were the SNCOs doing to allow that space to become physically trashed. If that is happening it is easy to understand that any form of leadership will be weak and ineffective. I know the teams hate it when they are having to scrub out and clean up but it is a basic building block of the need for order in the operation of the Ops Room. If the Ops Room is a **** tip then you are saying that the little things don't matter. But the bar for the little things starts to creep up. Why bother tidying up the books and papers, I mean who needs those extra seconds to route around to find information. Stateboards - bound to be correct from theist watch. Cups on the consoles, why do they treat us like children - its not like I will knock it over and flood the computer with cheap coffee. Who cares if small food scraps fall on the floor and are left to go mouldy.

Then the bar creeps up - joking maybe be but back pocket button today, submarine hatch tomorrow.

When ever you visited a ship you got a feeling of how she operated. Some ships had strict working patterns and delivered, some didn't. Some had a mature approach to work and succeed some didn't.

The report demonstrates that leadership was lacking and as a result the accident happened.

2) I'd bow to your 1st hand experience every time, but isn't it a "top down" failure? The CO sets his standards and directs his DOs to ensure the ship's company performs to them. I can't imagine any PWO tolerating graffiti on ops boards, let alone gash strewn around the Ops Room etc. The same goes for every DO compartmental/departmental inspection - reinforcing the skipper's standards, keeping on top of basic hygiene as well as equipment maintenance. The LHs doing their job but taking direction (or being shat on) from above.

I've seen reports of other lapses throughout the 7th Fleet. If pride in the ship and morale has plummeted this far it goes well beyond re-training. I'd be surprised if it didn't need a top down cull and a whole cultural/ethos overhaul.

3) Yes and no. Good Leading Hands and Petty Officers are the watch leaders and on a daily basis should have been stamping down in this. The state of the ops room reflects on them. The failing in training and equipment is very much from the top. You then have the worse of all worlds. The big and small things are being ignored.

4) Don't think I ever encountered an ops room in "**** state" in the RN. Cruising watch cleaning responsibilities are promulgated and strictly adhered to. If various bits of info were not on any of the stateboards then the Ops officer would have been carving his way to me instantly for an explanation!

5) This clip is a pretty good example of a Type 23 frigate Ops room environment during "defence watches", that I was accustomed to: (Video here). Note how "calm" it appears - despite what may be going on in the background. I crosspolled onto the Nimitz during Gulf ops for a few weeks and the contrast in attitudes was startling. A fisherman suddenly changing course caused no small amount of excitement!

6) I see that the Chief of the Boat was also sacked in very short order.

Having been obliged to work with Murrcans in the past, they were-for the most part-good people.

However, I was left with the abiding impression that any 'senior enlisted' that had 'Command' in front of their rank:

1. Couldn't.

2. Didn't really understand the definition of the word.

7) Whilst it’s always been fun to abuse US Forces for just being “****”, context is king. This inspection was done about 48 hours after the collision. The reason there were piss-bottles everywhere was due to the fact the sewage system had failed during the collision. From some reports, there were only one set of heads for the entire ship.

Likewise, HMS NOTTINGHAM and HMS ENDURANCE were pretty foul after their incidents.

There’s lots to criticise the USN about over this series of collisions, but the state of the Ops Room really isn’t one of them.

8) Comparing the RN to the USN is like comparing the UK to the US. We’re different - don’t let a common language lull you into thinking we’re two navies with slightly different accents...

...and yes, I know the RN do have their own faults and mishaps as well. The arrangement on the QE Carrier's with RN or RAF F35's embarking with U.S Marine F35's will be interesting to see over the next few years.


Great input, thanks. All failures aboard a ship are top down failures.
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Old 03-02-2019, 09:55   #74
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Re: USNavy Report on Fitzgerald Collision.

Below is a image showing time course speed.

It is clear that there was a failure to discern the closing courses and to communicate intentions or to give way.

But which vessel was the stand on based on the tracking?

Vessels are supposed to give way to vessels on their starboard side, and the vessel on the starboard side is to stand on;
While detail of the course track of the other two vessels is not shown, it seems that the Fitzgerald's course was crossing several vessels.

https://news.usni.org/2018/06/17/sum...rald-collision
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Old 03-02-2019, 10:03   #75
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Re: USNavy Report on Fitzgerald Collision.

Greater detail provide in this link http://https://www.maritime-executiv...ic-without-ais

At 1630 hours on June 16, the USS Fitzgerald got under way from Yokosuka, Japan, making a course southbound for sea. At 2300 hours, her commanding officer, executive officer and navigator left the bridge, leaving the officer of the deck with the conn.

Fitzgerald approached the vessel traffic separation (VTS) scheme north of Oshima Island and came to a course of 190 at 20 knots. Her pre-approved navigation track did not account for or follow the area’s VTS patterns, she was not broadcasting an AIS signal and all her exterior lights were extinguished (except for navigation lights).

At 0108, Fitzgerald crossed the bow of a ship at approximately 650 yards, passed a second vessel at two nm and a third vessel at 2.5 nm. In contravention of standing orders, no reports of these three encounters were made to the commanding officer.

At 0110, Fitzgerald's watchstanders noted the radar signature of the container ship ACX Crystal at 11 nm, and they attempted to initiate a radar track on her, without success. At 0117, the OOD plotted a track on a vessel that he believed to be the Crystal, and determined that the contact would pass at 1500 yards on the starboard side.

At 0120, the junior officer of the deck visually sighted Crystal and noted that her course would coincide with Fitzgerald's track. The OOD remained convinced that Crystal would pass at a safe distance, even after the junior officer advised him to slow down. Two other ships – the Wan Hai and Maersk Evora – were also approaching with close CPAs, and there were over a dozen other contacts in the vicinity.

At 0127, with the Crystal closing fast, the OOD ordered a fifty degree turn to starboard, then rescinded the command and ordered full speed ahead and hard to port. The actions were delayed as the Conning Officer “froze” in the moment. The OOD and the Conning Officer both began to shout orders to the helm.

At 0129, two minutes and 1,200 yards of forward travel later, the Boatswain’s Mate of the Watch put the rudder over hard left and pushed the ship’s throttles forward.

At 0130:34, the Crystal struck the Fitzgerald amidships on the starboard side, crushing the commanding officer's cabin and creating a 12-foot by 17-foot hole below the waterline, leading to rapid flooding in a machinery space and a berthing area (below left).

At no point did the bridge watchstanders on Crystal or Fitzgerald make radio contact. In addition, Fitzgerald's watchstanders did not sound the general alarm to warn their shipmates of an impending collision.
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