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      Abbreviated rules   07/28/2017

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Bruno

Tanker hits Destoyer, how is this possible?

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This is a speculative illustration by newspaper, but I think it's pretty close to what happened. Bulb piercing the destroyer hull below WL likely rolled it to stbd, followed immediately by stem hitting destroyer sheer rolling it to port. Nearly instantaneous. 

41931B8C00000578-4621656-The_cargo_ship_

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Is anyone aware of any logging of radio traffic at the time.  Seems to me that there should have been an immediate pan-pan call from one or both vessels.  

Anyone know?

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19 minutes ago, RKoch said:

This is a speculative illustration by newspaper, but I think it's pretty close to what happened. Bulb piercing the destroyer hull below WL likely rolled it to stbd, followed immediately by stem hitting destroyer sheer rolling it to port. Nearly instantaneous. 

41931B8C00000578-4621656-The_cargo_ship_

OK...this is what it seems concluding from the handful of media released damage photos....backward engineering....but not what the photo damage shows unless the

JapBox forward speed was @ 3 knots.....if 18 knots as has been offered up as typical....USN would have been damn near been cut in two....after the wreckage sub mariner photos  viewed from the bottom of the sea.... this was a shoulder brush...IMO not an acute impact 

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14 minutes ago, P_Wop said:

Is anyone aware of any logging of radio traffic at the time.  Seems to me that there should have been an immediate pan-pan call from one or both vessels.  

Anyone know?

It's unknown if there was any radio comm between vessels prior to collision. Likely not, as they seemed unaware of each other (no collision alarms, etc.). Collision destroyed destroyers communications room. Later they established communication via portable sat phones. Container ship reported collision to Japan CG about 55 minutes afterwards, after they'd made U-turn and returned to scene. They likely didn't know what they hit, if they even realized they hit something. About 4X the displacement of the destroyer.

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19 minutes ago, P_Wop said:

Is anyone aware of any logging of radio traffic at the time.  Seems to me that there should have been an immediate pan-pan call from one or both vessels.  

Anyone know?

I'm guessing here, but suspect the destroyer lost power on the bridge at or just after the collision.  She had a main engineering space containing a generator and switchboard flood solid (about five decks directly below the bridge), and major damage to spaces just below.  Very likely that damn near everything there died, which would kill the hard-mounted VHF radios.  No idea why they didn't try a handheld, except that they had other things to worry about right then. Radio Central was also flooding, so even reports back to Big Navy on the beach were delayed.  First report left the ship via a satellite phone.

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6 hours ago, jack_sparrow said:

Well only way grey ship could get hit on starboard side if it was going south/south east across container ships bow??? First time that has been suggested.?

 

6 hours ago, estarzinger said:

Are you dyslexic? 

Hypothetically Vessel A going south, Vessel B going E (or NE). They collide. Which side is vessel A hit on - you think port side - really?

Can I offer a simple drawing :) LOL

stb.jpg.17d0bb4e0e61e76a2ab78deac4041f29.jpg

I really hope you are not assigned ROW or collision avoidance duty.

But I have no idea what track Navy was on, only that this makes it look like #1 they could have predicted/expected the port turn by Crystal, and that #2 they may have been in (or near) crystal's TSS lane.

Dyslexic maybe but not dumbfuck stupid ...the point was you don't know the grey ships course therefore leaving multiple courses on account of starboard damage, including both going north. Your TSS example is a southerly course only.

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30 minutes ago, jack_sparrow said:

 

 but not dumbfuck stupid .

Hmmm, unproven lol

the point was you don't know the grey ships course

We know Crystal's course (was in the TSS going NE). We know Navy was hit on starboard side and Crystal Port bow.  Obviously Navy's course has in the range that allowed those three things to be true, which means generally somewhere between E and S, or possibly stopped and not making way.

Your TSS example is a southerly course only.

And the TSS is not an 'example' it is a real navigational feature shown in the US pilot and on the US chart of the area.

 

 

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It's possible that Fitzgerald and Crystal were on parallel or near-parallel courses (NE) with Fitzgerald to port of Crystal, and a course change by one or the other or both (which might not show up on the track of Crystal at the scale shown) brought them into contact.

As I recall (one of the Burke class vets might correct me) the Navy's normal speed on a transit is around 15kt as that's most economical. If they weren't transiting somewhere specific but just hanging out doing racetracks, probably slower.

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One more hypothetical:

 

If you were the person on the bridge of the containership making the decisions, and saw only stern light ...

- (do to your location very far aft of the long ship, barely missing green nav light of the destroyer without knowing that being the case) -

... of an unknown vessel of unknown course and speed, with no AIS info and no time to use radar to determine it's course and speed, what action would you take to avoid the collision:

1) turn port?

2) turn starboard?

3) slow down?

Remember there was a lot of other traffic making it more difficult tracking all of them in advance. And if most of them are on parallel course to you, any course change will result more close calls with them as will slowing down, so you are not only  determined to avoid one collision, but optimizing how you do it, in order to avoid another event later on.

 

If you were the OOD of the destroyer and were informed of approaching containership on a collision course from approximately 112 degs from starbord side, what action would you take to avoid the collision, assuming the crew of the containership see your green as well as stern light:

1) turn port?

2) turn starboard?

3) slow down?

4) speed up?

What if you are not sure if they see your green or not, does your the action change or remain the same?

What if you are sure they also see your green, does your the action change or remain the same?

 

If someone here thinks all those questions have answers with only one correct choice for each set, please inform the rest of us what those are.

If the OOD would be sure if the crew of the containership do see your green or not, please explain why it is so.

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4 hours ago, SailBlueH2O said:

IMO....if the to collided with the bulb first impact USN would have been rolled.....

Which way?  Do you mean toward the freighter as the bulb  'kicked her feet out from under her' rolling the superstructure toward the bow of the freighter?    By the photo the freighter bulb was visible below the waterline, she probably was not at the published draft of 12 m.   Any guesses on the depth of the bulb?   The destroyer had a draft of about 9 m.   Would the hit have rolled the bridge toward the freighter?  If the bulb hit close to 90' I think it would have lifted and pushed (as well as crushing and tearing) the destroyer without much roll.   This would have been in addition to any pivoting forces due to the location of contact along the length of the destroyer.   My guess is more of an angle, dissipating some force and saving the Fitzgerald from being cleaved.   

A picture of the Fitzgerald in drydock 2006.   This is the closest I could find to her hull shape.   The bulb would ride under this rounded hull, don't you think?

US_Navy_060124-N-3946H-001_The_guided_missile_destroyer_USS_Fitzgerald_%28DDG_62%29_shown_in_dry_dock_to_conduct_a_scheduled_Ship%5Ersquo%2Cs_Restricted_Availability_%28SRA%29.jpg

 

 

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29 minutes ago, TJSoCal said:

It's possible that Fitzgerald and Crystal were on parallel or near-parallel courses (NE) with Fitzgerald to port of Crystal, and a course change by one or the other or both (which might not show up on the track of Crystal at the scale shown) brought them into contact.

As I recall (one of the Burke class vets might correct me) the Navy's normal speed on a transit is around 15kt as that's most economical. If they weren't transiting somewhere specific but just hanging out doing racetracks, probably slower.

Nearly parallel on the same race track and closing with faster one coming from behind on the quarter , then a course change, probably has a higher probability of generating an incident than a T bone on the race track.

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Zonker, you state "well that's 12000 ft which divide by 600 ft in a N.mile is 2 miles"

You misunderstand. While I could do this at 2 a.m. - slowly, I don't naturally think in yards, nor do I think merchant ship officers do. If yards were used, you would naturally have to convert to a unit that makes sense intuitively. My point was that it would be a slow process if the Navy ship had called, and if they had used yards in their communications. I think in nautical miles. I program my AIS to alarm for CPAs of <1 n.m. I know what that is, and what if feels like

Glad to know if you call a Navy ship you might get to speak to the OOD directly.

I have been called by US Navy ships and it's usually "sailboat with Canadian flag off my starboard bow...". Sometimes they mention the distance but I don't recall what units they have used.

If I call a merchant ship I call "MSC Snugglebear - this is the sailboat 3 miles off your port bow. We have a CPA of <1m in about 15 minutes. Can you alter course to starboard to give us a bit more room please?"

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12 hours ago, Omer said:

I do not agree with this. Mass and srength are two different things. If you fire a cannon ball weighing 100 kilos, head on  to a commercial airliner weighing 100 tons, probably the cannon ball would be slightly dented, whereas the plane would be destroyed.

Mass x velocity  = power. The destroyer is not stopping a ship weighing 4 time the tonnage . You cant fight physics

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31 minutes ago, Lark said:

Which way?  Do you mean toward the freighter as the bulb  'kicked her feet out from under her' rolling the superstructure toward the bow of the freighter?    By the photo the freighter bulb was visible below the waterline, she probably was not at the published draft of 12 m.   Any guesses on the depth of the bulb?   The destroyer had a draft of about 9 m.   Would the hit have rolled the bridge toward the freighter?  If the bulb hit close to 90' I think it would have lifted and pushed (as well as crushing and tearing) the destroyer without much roll.   This would have been in addition to any pivoting forces due to the location of contact along the length of the destroyer.   My guess is more of an angle, dissipating some force and saving the Fitzgerald from being cleaved.   

A picture of the Fitzgerald in drydock 2006.   This is the closest I could find to her hull shape.   The bulb would ride under this rounded hull, don't you think?

US_Navy_060124-N-3946H-001_The_guided_missile_destroyer_USS_Fitzgerald_%28DDG_62%29_shown_in_dry_dock_to_conduct_a_scheduled_Ship%5Ersquo%2Cs_Restricted_Availability_%28SRA%29.jpg

 

 

Impact point of the bulb is below center of gravity of destroyer, but above center of gravity of added mass of accelerating sea water due to impact. Combined effect is not hard roll, like SailBlueH2O probably assumed.

If those ships would have been closer to parallel courses, the bulb would not have hit at all, and neither would any other point at the centerline of the freighter. The freighter is too wide at the deck edge height of the destroyer to allow that.

In reality the bulb is a sharp hard object that does penetrate hull plating of destroyer, until well rounded stem as a blunt object stops the bulb proceeding much further inwards, saving the ship from being cleaved by distributing the impact zone to a much wider area with more metal to absorb the impact energy. Yawing motion helps a lot to stop the bulb from penetrating further as well.

Most likely the bulb hit to an area, where hull plating is still close to vertical. Thanks for the pics showing the hull shape in that area.

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15 minutes ago, Gutterblack said:

Mass x velocity  = power. The destroyer is not stopping a ship weighing 4 time the tonnage . You cant fight physics

Mass x velocity = momentum.

Force x velocity = power.

The added mass of sea water being accelerated due to sudden sideways motion of the destroyer might initially have more mass then the ship, but not for very long as the speed slows down. But only the bow of the destroyer is accelerated to the same speed as the freighter slows down into. Not the center of mass of it, angular velocity due to yawing is not small in such an event.

Ps, tonnage is not a measure of mass or weight, but volume. See https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tonnage

 

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Whenever something like this happens, especially when it relates to ships and the sea, the press rarely report any incident accurately.

This thread has at least 5 or 6 posts where the posters thought the track evidenced a heavily laden container ship successfully ramming a US destroyer; all because GMA (and others) reported a 2.30 collision not 1.30.

Then sites like RightScoop and Syracuse.com right away talk of a terrorist act.

Even as they reported it, I could look up Japanese news sites to find that the coastguard stated the radio report by the tanker was made at 2.20 not 2.30 and that the incident was reported by the shipping company as having happened at 1.30.

How do conspiracy theories get such traction (even here)?

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32 minutes ago, Trickypig said:

How do conspiracy theories get such traction (even here)?

If you think this is frustrating, stay away from Facebook.

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The collision is between 1:06/4:29 and 1:07/4:29 in that video. 1 second in the video is 10 seconds in reality, from 16:33:22 UTC into 16:33:32 UTC as shown in the upper left corner. Freighter slows down 6.1 knots from 17.3 into 11.2 and course changes by 47 degrees in 10 seconds, only possible due to collision.

Source of the video is VesselFinder. They don't get things as wrong as the media these days.

 

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According to that VesselFinder video ACX was doing constant 70 deg 18.5 knots from 16:19 to 16:30:22. Then it slowed down and turned to starboard: 88 deg 17.3 knots at 16:30:37. Still at 16:33:27 ACX is doing 88 deg 17.3 knots at seems to be at the same spot as at 16:30:37, but "WAN HAI 266" has jumped to a clearly different position. Thus VesselFinder has not received (or is not showing) ACX AIS data between these two points. Then at 16:33:32 ACX jumps to a new position doing 135 deg 11.2 knots. At 16:36:27 comes the next jump to another place and 116 deg 14.5 knots.

So all one can conclude that something happened around 16:30. ACX turned to starboard and slowed down. Which part of that was due to ACX crew and which colliding with Fitz can't be figured out from such a lacking data. But one thing is quite obvious: ACX accelerated to 15 knots after slowing down. Did they increase revs or was it on cruising revs all the time. ACX did not accelerate back to 18.5 knots thus at some point revs was decreased.

Where is the AIS GPS located in ACX? During a hard turn due to a collision different parts of the ship will have different SOG and COG. How much filtering does the GPS have? From that data it is impossible to say was the 70->88 deg and 18.5->17.3 knots a avoiding manouver or was that already due to a collision. Much more could be said from 1 s or even 10 s interval GPS data. VDR data will reveal all the actions made by the crew.

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12 hours ago, NotSoFast said:

One more hypothetical:

 

If you were the person on the bridge of the containership making the decisions, and saw only stern light ...

- (do to your location very far aft of the long ship, barely missing green nav light of the destroyer without knowing that being the case) -

... of an unknown vessel of unknown course and speed, with no AIS info and no time to use radar to determine it's course and speed, what action would you take to avoid the collision:

1) turn port?

2) turn starboard?

3) slow down?

Remember there was a lot of other traffic making it more difficult tracking all of them in advance. And if most of them are on parallel course to you, any course change will result more close calls with them as will slowing down, so you are not only  determined to avoid one collision, but optimizing how you do it, in order to avoid another event later on.

 

If you were the OOD of the destroyer and were informed of approaching containership on a collision course from approximately 112 degs from starbord side, what action would you take to avoid the collision, assuming the crew of the containership see your green as well as stern light:

1) turn port?

2) turn starboard?

3) slow down?

4) speed up?

What if you are not sure if they see your green or not, does your the action change or remain the same?

What if you are sure they also see your green, does your the action change or remain the same?

 

If someone here thinks all those questions have answers with only one correct choice for each set, please inform the rest of us what those are.

If the OOD would be sure if the crew of the containership do see your green or not, please explain why it is so.

I don't think one has to be a Master to make the wright decision. Certainly I am not. Intuitively if i am the container ship i would first keep my speed but turn  to starboard to make sure that i am putting adequate distance between myself and the stern light. Diverging away from the parallel course should also help increasing the distance as you would be  vectorally slowing down. When i see the green light clearly  and there is enough distance then i would resume course and safely overtake. if despite turning to starboard i am unable to increase the distance then there is a possibility that the green light is not on and/or  the destroyer is also turning to starboard. In that case i would cut the engine and slow down while continuing to turn to starboard.

If i were the destroyer i would turn to port and speed up, both to put more distance between both vessels and also to avoid a possible collision.

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27 minutes ago, Omer said:

I don't think one has to be a Master to make the wright decision. Certainly I am not. Intuitively if i am the container ship i would first keep my speed but turn  to starboard to make sure that i am putting adequate distance between myself and the stern light. Diverging away from the parallel course should also help increasing the distance as you would be  vectorally slowing down. When i see the green light clearly  and there is enough distance then i would resume course and safely overtake. if despite turning to starboard i am unable to increase the distance then there is a possibility that the green light is not on and/or  the destroyer is also turning to starboard. In that case i would cut the engine and slow down while continuing to turn to starboard.

If i were the destroyer i would turn to port and speed up, both to put more distance between both vessels and also to avoid a possible collision.

What parallel course?

If you red the question you know that you have no idea what the course of the other vessel is, and therefore no idea if/when it's ever parallel.

Also you do not explain how far you keep turning the freighter, and how that allows to keep clear from the other vessels there. You might end up colliding one of them, if you just keep turning and that reaction comes as a surprise to the other vessels there. It will be hard for some of them required to keep clear of you, if you continuously maneuver. And you know your rate of turn is slow compared to some (or even most of) other vessels, and therefore it's more than possible you can't out turn the vessel your are trying to avoid.

 

And as a destroyer, your action keeps the freighter in your sternlight sector, so that it's crew will not learn where you are going. But even more importantly your action chances the situation relative to all other vessels rapidly, and they will now all make actions accordingly, causing a lot of close calls between them, and perhaps between you and some of them.

If you have instead choose to stop, it would be very easy for all the others to avoid a stationary vessel, and you could signal need for that by using anchor lights instead of navigation lights. Of course by far the best choice would be to turn the AIS on if there was any real risk of a collision.

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15 hours ago, NotSoFast said:

If you were the person on the bridge of the containership making the decisions, and saw only stern light ...... of an unknown vessel of unknown course and speed, with  no time to use radar to determine it's course and speed, what action would you take to avoid the collision:

It does not take long for a modern radar to get course and speed indication - and I can immediately assess its distance (if radar does not show it so close I have time to get plot, more visual information and vhf contact). So, you are hypothesizing that this potential collision/stern light/radar target is very close.  In which case, I believe I am give way vessel, I make turn to pass which ever side takes me most away from that stern light. (eg if the light is to port of my bow then I turn to starboard) without getting me in trouble with other traffic.  Watch target (visual and radar) to get more information. I try to make VHF contact (but that's not primary action it is really a close encounter).  At some point I will pass, see more nav lights, get radar data, or make vhf contact, and I can make further decisions.

Quote

If you were the OOD of the destroyer and were informed of approaching containership on a collision course from approximately 112 degs from starbord side, what action would you take to avoid the collision, assuming the crew of the containership see your green as well as stern light:

I am give way vessel. If I were commercial my primary tool would be to turn, probably to port as that gives the situation more time to develop (but would depend on other factors); however as Navy, I do have a real speed option. As Navy my decision depends in part on how far away the target is and if I am in fact trying to get somewhere on a schedule.  If it is some good distance away and I need to be somewhere, as Navy Destroyer, I would probably speed up enough to open at least 1nm cpa - if not possible thru pure speed then turn a bit also.  As Navy,  call if the Captain if situation meets standing orders, I probably am not going to flip on AiS, but there are some serious deck lights I could flip on if I was worried I was not seen, and make VHF call if there is time but still concerned container does not understand situation.  But honestly as Navy I dont really care what the container ship knows or does not know. My sensors can tell me when they fart, and I have twice their speed and twice their maneuverability.

Quote

 

If the OOD would be sure if the crew of the containership do see your green or not, please explain why it is so.

You can never be sure anyone sees anything.  But you do need to follow the colreg framework, working the situation as you best understand it.  There's no rocket science here - you stay alert, make your moves early, and do the best with the information you have.

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2 hours ago, NotSoFast said:

What parallel course?

If you red the question you know that you have no idea what the course of the other vessel is, and therefore no idea if/when it's ever parallel.

Also you do not explain how far you keep turning the freighter, and how that allows to keep clear from the other vessels there. You might end up colliding one of them, if you just keep turning and that reaction comes as a surprise to the other vessels there. It will be hard for some of them required to keep clear of you, if you continuously maneuver. And you know your rate of turn is slow compared to some (or even most of) other vessels, and therefore it's more than possible you can't out turn the vessel your are trying to avoid.

 

And as a destroyer, your action keeps the freighter in your sternlight sector, so that it's crew will not learn where you are going. But even more importantly your action chances the situation relative to all other vessels rapidly, and they will now all make actions accordingly, causing a lot of close calls between them, and perhaps between you and some of them.

If you have instead choose to stop, it would be very easy for all the others to avoid a stationary vessel, and you could signal need for that by using anchor lights instead of navigation lights. Of course by far the best choice would be to turn the AIS on if there was any real risk of a collision.

NotSoFast ..Couple of comments...

If you are seeing a stern light it is not as if you have no idea what the course of the other vessel is. If you are seeing it to your port, as in our example, you know that it is to your port and slightly ahead of you. The maximum angle of approach is less than 67.5 degree. When you start turning to starboard this angle would start diminishing and you would eventually become parallel. Thats what i meant.

I would begin to turn to starboard as an immediate action, while observing how the distance changes.If there is an immediate danger of colliding with a vessel so nearby, i would choose to worry about other vessels after avoiding this one.

If you choose to stop, ( to put an end to all your worries) each time you see a stern light, then you would probably be out of your job pretty quickly or you wouldnt make it there in the first place.

If i am the destroyer, and ahead,  and somebody closes in  on me my first reaction would be to put distance between us and i would run away at full speed without thinking. And seconds later on second thought   i would steer to port preferably.

Some solutions require immediate action and may not be hundred percent correct. My answer to the question is entirely based on what i would do in a real life situation where time and distance is limited. As opposed to finding the most correct or the safest solution. I am sure all the Masters here shall put us on the correct course.

By the way, what would you choose to do short of stopping entirely? 

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14 minutes ago, stayoutofthemiddle said:

I wonder if this photo was leaked? I'm amazed they would release it prior to the investigation being over...

of course....this is a cell phone pic after arriving in port....witness the harbor lights....not as big as the leak below the waterline....

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12 minutes ago, stayoutofthemiddle said:

I wonder if this photo was leaked? I'm amazed they would release it prior to the investigation being over...

 

2 minutes ago, SailBlueH2O said:

of course....this is a cell phone pic after arriving in port....witness the harbor lights....not as big as the leak below the waterline....

The photo and accompanying story can be found on the US Nava Institute website.

The Story slants towards the Box Ship as bad guy and mostly dodges any shortfall on the big grey boat.

“The crew of the guided-missile destroyer that was struck by a merchant ship…

 

Investigators now think Crystal was transiting to Tokyo on autopilot with an inattentive or asleep crew when the merchant vessel struck a glancing blow on the destroyer’s starboard side at about 1:30 AM local time on Friday...”

 

The closest the article gets to suggesting possible errors and omissions by the Navy:

 

U.S. Navy investigators are being tight-lipped about details of the investigation, even inside the service. However, information USNI News learned from the Japan Coast Guard investigation indicates Fitzgerald was operating normally when the collision occurred, raising questions more questions regarding why Benson wasn’t on the bridge when a contact was so close to the destroyer.”

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It's not clear what happened, and we don't know for sure, but if I was skippering that freighter I'd hoist the red flag and let the committee sort it out in the protest room. 

 

 

 

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18 minutes ago, KC375 said:

 

The photo and accompanying story can be found on the US Nava Institute website.

 

The Story slants towards the Box Ship as bad guy and mostly dodges any shortfall on the big grey boat.

 

“The crew of the guided-missile destroyer that was struck by a merchant ship…

 

 

 

Investigators now think Crystal was transiting to Tokyo on autopilot with an inattentive or asleep crew when the merchant vessel struck a glancing blow on the destroyer’s starboard side at about 1:30 AM local time on Friday...”

 

 

 

The closest the article gets to suggesting possible errors and omissions by the Navy:

 

 

 

U.S. Navy investigators are being tight-lipped about details of the investigation, even inside the service. However, information USNI News learned from the Japan Coast Guard investigation indicates Fitzgerald was operating normally when the collision occurred, raising questions more questions regarding why Benson wasn’t on the bridge when a contact was so close to the destroyer.”

 

"glancing blow"....my theory of parallel converging courses.... 

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This is why most Navy ship's captains rarely sleep in their cabins at sea. Maybe out in the open ocean they'll steal a few hours but whenever they are in constricted waters or in the vicinity of other vessels they mostly nap in their chair on the bridge. It's an awesome responsibility with drastic consequences if you slip up. Not for the faint hearted (or narcoleptic). 

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9 minutes ago, kinardly said:

This is why most Navy ship's captains rarely sleep in their cabins at sea. Maybe out in the open ocean they'll steal a few hours but whenever they are in constricted waters or in the vicinity of other vessels they mostly nap in their chair on the bridge. It's an awesome responsibility with drastic consequences if you slip up. Not for the faint hearted (or narcoleptic). 

the Captains quarters was on the other side of a door on

the working bridge ....WTF...yeah he will take a career  hit and be referenced in USNA long after he is gone....gezzo oh pezzo....unless there are empty bottles of rum in his stateroom wreckage....let the man heal in retirement

 

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4 minutes ago, kinardly said:

This is why most Navy ship's captains rarely sleep in their cabins at sea. Maybe out in the open ocean they'll steal a few hours but whenever they are in constricted waters or in the vicinity of other vessels they mostly nap in their chair on the bridge. It's an awesome responsibility with drastic consequences if you slip up. Not for the faint hearted (or narcoleptic). 

I have no idea what Navy SOP is. But if I was commanding the destroyer I would be on the bridge when encountering heavy ship traffic, particularly if crossing a TSS zone (as it appears to me). Out in normal ocean shipping lanes Id turn the bridge over to OOD and grab a little shut-eye.

As an aside, Captains duties are much more than overseeing operation of the ship. There's a shitload of paperwork...reports to be written, orders from Fleet to be read and acknowledged, documents to be signed, and discipline to be meted out. It's not like the Captain isn't working when he's not on the bridge.

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21 minutes ago, SailBlueH2O said:

"glancing blow"....my theory of parallel converging courses.... 

Not sure what angle you consider a 'converging course'. The flooding was due to the ships bulb hitting the destroyer below waterline. Reported massive hole and damage extending all the way to keel. I'm amazed the destroyer stayed afloat...if it has been much smaller boat, like a WW2 Fletcher it would likely have been cut in two. Doesn't sound to me  like a glancing blow due to converging courses.

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16 minutes ago, kinardly said:

This is why most Navy ship's captains rarely sleep in their cabins at sea. Maybe out in the open ocean they'll steal a few hours but whenever they are in constricted waters or in the vicinity of other vessels they mostly nap in their chair on the bridge. It's an awesome responsibility with drastic consequences if you slip up. Not for the faint hearted (or narcoleptic). 

I have sailed with skippers like that and it is a huge PITA to deal with them as they get more and more sleep deprived and do weirder and weirder shit. If the entire ship does not have ONE other person that can not run into large ships and let the captain get some rest, they are an accident waiting to happen.

I might suggest the Navy assign this book for study before taking the helm:

https://www.amazon.com/Avoid-Huge-Ships-John-Trimmer/dp/0870334336/ref=sr_1_2?ie=UTF8&qid=1498156495&sr=8-2&keywords=how+to+avoid+large+ships

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29 minutes ago, Lex Teredo said:

It's not clear what happened, and we don't know for sure, but if I was skippering that freighter I'd hoist the red flag and let the committee sort it out in the protest room. 

 

 

 

From the track, it looks like he decided to take a penalty turn instead...  ;-)

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9 minutes ago, RKoch said:

Not sure what angle you consider a 'converging course'. The flooding was due to the ships bulb hitting the destroyer below waterline. Reported massive hole and damage extending all the way to keel. I'm amazed the destroyer stayed afloat...if it has been much smaller boat, like a WW2 Fletcher it would likely have been cut in two. Doesn't sound to me  like a glancing blow due to converging courses.

RKoch...mine is 100% head scratch trying to reconcile the limited facts with my personal experience off shore at night....addressing the bulb hole in the USN Fitz..as the shoulder bump in the shopping aisle between the two carts.... upon impact the lighter USN slowed much faster and was turned/pivoted/impaled  onto the horn of the  of 4x larger vessel...

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13 minutes ago, SailBlueH2O said:

RKoch...mine is 100% head scratch trying to reconcile the limited facts with my personal experience off shore at night....addressing the bulb hole in the USN Fitz..as the shoulder bump in the shopping aisle between the two carts.... upon impact the lighter USN slowed much faster and was turned/pivoted/impaled  onto the horn of the  of 4x larger vessel...

Impact was well forward of amidship. Destroyer's bow would be forced away, not torwards.

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17 minutes ago, TJSoCal said:

From the track, it looks like he decided to take a penalty turn instead...  ;-)


Yeah, and you know he's not an Anarchist or there'd be a thread about "barging" and "a gray boat that I'm not going to name here" which somebody would immediately name in the next reply.  

 

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I did a little research on the Burkes. Some  models had an electric propullsion added during refits, allowing very efficient cruising albeit at a low speed, 13 knots or less. I could not determine if the Fitz was one of those. 

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8 minutes ago, RKoch said:

I did a little research on the Burkes. Some  models had an electric propullsion added during refits, allowing very efficient cruising albeit at a low speed, 13 knots or less. I could not determine if the Fitz was one of those. 

That's interesting, and would probably also be hella quiet for antisubmarine warfare ops (although I'm sure they still have to run generators but not the main engines),

The article I found was from 2015 and said that installations would start late in 2016, so I'm guessing none of them are at sea yet. Plus ships homeported overseas are usually the last to get new stuff like that.

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10 minutes ago, TJSoCal said:

That's interesting, and would probably also be hella quiet for antisubmarine warfare ops (although I'm sure they still have to run generators but not the main engines),

The article I found was from 2015 and said that installations would start late in 2016, so I'm guessing none of them are at sea yet. Plus ships homeported overseas are usually the last to get new stuff like that.

Article:

https://news.usni.org/2015/09/23/navy-set-to-install-hybrid-electric-drives-in-destroyer-fleet-staring-next-year

2 were supposed to have been done in 2016, and 4 per year after that. So, estimated 3 or 4 have been completed. 

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14 minutes ago, RKoch said:

Article:

https://news.usni.org/2015/09/23/navy-set-to-install-hybrid-electric-drives-in-destroyer-fleet-staring-next-year

2 were supposed to have been done in 2016, and 4 per year after that. So, estimated 3 or 4 have been completed. 

Yeah, that's the article I saw. But an overhaul period that included an alteration like that would typically be at least 9 months, probably more than a year. So there might be a system or two at sea, but I don't think Fitzgerald would have been one.

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Why is there no information about the course and speed or even the destination of Fitzgerald? USN may keep their secrets, but surely there are several ships and Japanese Coast Guard who have spotted it on radar and could share some information. If I was working for the press, I would call some of the ships shown near by in the VesselFinder video.

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54 minutes ago, RKoch said:

I did a little research on the Burkes. Some  models had an electric propullsion added during refits, allowing very efficient cruising albeit at a low speed, 13 knots or less. I could not determine if the Fitz was one of those. 

Issue with the Burke class has been high fuel burn at slower speeds. For a lot of time in the "NAG" or north Arabian gulf, they would conduct "drift ops" as their mission was AAW/Picket and they didn't need to be in a specific location or headed in a specific direction just sitting there, outside of sea lanes in and out of the oil ports and watching the radar. Generators on but main propulsion essentially shut down. On the battle group staff, we tracked their fuel burn to budget daily as fuel for them was a big bill. 

I suspect the hybrid is an outcome of that. Takes a few minutes to spin up the main turbines. 

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7 minutes ago, Innocent Bystander said:

Issue with the Burke class has been high fuel burn at slower speeds. For a lot of time in the "NAG" or north Arabian gulf, they would conduct "drift ops" as their mission was AAW/Picket and they didn't need to be in a specific location or headed in a specific direction just sitting there, outside of sea lanes in and out of the oil ports and watching the radar. Generators on but main propulsion essentially shut down. On the battle group staff, we tracked their fuel burn to budget daily as fuel for them was a big bill. 

I suspect the hybrid is an outcome of that. Takes a few minutes to spin up the main turbines. 

I'm surprised they don't reactive the Perry Frigates for that role...radar pickets with just self-defense weapons. Smaller boat, smaller crew, cheaper to run.

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2 minutes ago, RKoch said:

I'm surprised they don't reactive the Perry Frigates for that role...radar pickets with just self-defense weapons. Smaller boat, smaller crew, cheaper to run.

No money. The FFGs were the unwanted stepchildren of the Surface force. We kept them because somebody wanted to count them as real ships. Even as a Aviator, I felt bad taking their refit(availability) money and giving it to the Submarines   I threatened to park a submarine once because they overspent its maintenance budget. Had a call from a 4 star within 2 hours telling me even joking about that was not allowed. 

Blu. Nuc ships are pretty sweet until you have to decommission them. Not having to worry about refueling on a daily basis provides wonderful operational flexibility but there is a lifecycle cost. 

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We track Nuc ship fuel burn to, as after 13 years or so, even they need to be "refueled."  And that means cutting holes in the sides of the ship to get to the reactors.  If I recall correctly, we called it "effective full power hours"

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57 minutes ago, Innocent Bystander said:

No money. The FFGs were the unwanted stepchildren of the Surface force. We kept them because somebody wanted to count them as real ships. Even as a Aviator, I felt bad taking their refit(availability) money and giving it to the Submarines   I threatened to park a submarine once because they overspent its maintenance budget. Had a call from a 4 star within 2 hours telling me even joking about that was not allowed. 

Blu. Nuc ships are pretty sweet until you have to decommission them. Not having to worry about refueling on a daily basis provides wonderful operational flexibility but there is a lifecycle cost. 

A modest proposal....decommissioned residue could be built into the southern border wall....or parked in what was formerly known as NK~~~ 

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58 minutes ago, Crash said:

We track Nuc ship fuel burn to, as after 13 years or so, even they need to be "refueled."  And that means cutting holes in the sides of the ship to get to the reactors.  If I recall correctly, we called it "effective full power hours"

Yeah, but we never pulled the rods "all the way". Well, there was this one time for testing. 

Its nice to point a carrier and hit the throttle without worrying about where the next gas station. Of course, once you start throwing lawn darts off the pointy end, you burn the JP pretty quickly. I can remember a long time ago crossing the entire Med at speeds that were only whispered about. 

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3 minutes ago, Innocent Bystander said:

Yeah, but we never pulled the rods "all the way". Well, there was this one time for testing. 

Its nice to point a carrier and hit the throttle without worrying about where the next gas station. Of course, once you start throwing lawn darts off the pointy end, you burn the JP pretty quickly. I can remember a long time ago crossing the entire Med at speeds that were only whispered about.

yeah...i can't talk about it, but one night in Saigon.....

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I think the max speeds reported by the Navy are way below the actual. I'm just a boat bum with a sprinkling of Naval Architecture knowledge...pretty sure the Russian naval experts figured out how fast our boats were before they were even launched.

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1 hour ago, RKoch said:

I'm surprised they don't reactive the Perry Frigates for that role...radar pickets with just self-defense weapons. Smaller boat, smaller crew, cheaper to run.

I'm not sure there are any left. But they were always troublesome ships, more expensive than they were supposed to be (hah! it's big and grey but the basics of "b-o-a-t" still apply), and lacked punch. All that aside, they're better than no ships at all.

The Navy has had a long history of 'improving' destroyers until they're totally impractical. The Burkes are among the best, I think we should build more. The ship I served on longest was a Knox class frigate, often ridiculed but as a class they had a lot of punch and most of them were steaming mo-fos.

FB- Doug

 

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51 minutes ago, Steam Flyer said:

I'm not sure there are any left. But they were always troublesome ships, more expensive than they were supposed to be (hah! it's big and grey but the basics of "b-o-a-t" still apply), and lacked punch. All that aside, they're better than no ships at all.

The Navy has had a long history of 'improving' destroyers until they're totally impractical. The Burkes are among the best, I think we should build more. The ship I served on longest was a Knox class frigate, often ridiculed but as a class they had a lot of punch and most of them were steaming mo-fos.

FB- Doug

 

I think there's about 30 still moth-balled and not scrapped. They're pretty tough for little ships...both the Roberts and Stark took heavy damage and crews kept them afloat. The DDG-51 Burkes are back in production. Navy cancelled the 7 Zumwalts not started, and contracted for 6 new Burkes.

The problem with Navy ships is they keep piling on multiple functions and roles, and the weapons systems to support them, which not only cost money themselves but forces the ships to be bigger, use more fuel, and need bigger crews. If operating with a carrier fleet is eliminated as a role, frigates no longer need ASW capability, no longer need long range or carrier speed. Just have them in small Frigate squadrons operating independent of carriers, as picket boats. Only weapons needed are against aircraft and small boats. Can escort merchant ships in trouble spots like Persian Gulf, Gulf of Yemen, and off Somalia. If heavy offensive firepower was required, they could call in air support or destroyers from carrier groups in the region. 

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Kocher, 

Your right, re the "problem with Navy ships."  In peacetime, with generally smaller fleet sizes, there is great pressure for ships to be multi-role to make sure you have some asset available with some capability.  In wartime, its easier to build mission specific ships...Anti-aircraft Cruisers vs. Heavy Cruisers, Destroyer Escorts, vs. Destroyers, Picket Destroyers vs ASW Destroyers.  Today, who knows what mission we'll need a ship to perform?  There just aren't enough to fill all the taskings...so you need ships that can do alot of things.  Turning the LCS platform into a more multi-role Frigate is a result of that kind of requirements pressure.  The catch 22 is mission creep and multi-role ships are bigger, heavier, and more expensive, and rarely need all their capabilities at one time...

There is alot of talk right now of bringing a bunch of the mothballed Perry's back to active status to get fleet numbers up and to give the current fleet some room to breath and get badly needed overhaul/maintenance time...

Crash

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11 minutes ago, estarzinger said:

seems to me they need swarms of automated (drone) smallish vessels. 

these $xb ships with 18th century manning levels dont make much sense.

Evans,

what capabilities do you expect each drone in the swarm to have and what size do you expect them to be?  Anti surface?  Anti air. Shore fires support? Anti sub?  

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8 minutes ago, Innocent Bystander said:

Evans,

what capabilities do you expect each drone in the swarm to have and what size do you expect them to be?  Anti surface?  Anti air. Shore fires support? Anti sub?  

nothing like  the sound of a 16" round forcing it's way through the atmosphere over your head ....

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11 hours ago, estarzinger said:

 

I am give way vessel. If I were commercial my primary tool would be to turn, probably to port as that gives the situation more time to develop.

Hopefully you are never in charge of any vessel.

WTF does 'commercial' have to do with it? Mate when you have absolutely no idea what you are talking about then I would be best not to post. Do the world a favour and stay on the bow. Or move away from the sea.

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13 minutes ago, LB 15 said:

Hopefully you are never in charge of any vessel.

WTF does 'commercial' have to do with it? Mate when you have absolutely no idea what you are talking about then I would be best not to post. Do the world a favour and stay on the bow. Or move away from the sea.

LOL!  Yeah, just ask Beth Leonard.  Evans has never been in charge of a vessel, and never been near the sea.  He has no clue.

[end sarcasm]

Dude, really?

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45 minutes ago, Innocent Bystander said:

Evans,

what capabilities do you expect each drone in the swarm to have and what size do you expect them to be?  Anti surface?  Anti air. Shore fires support? Anti sub?  

My area here is automated control & (learning) game theory, not force structure . . . but . . . . 

#1 I am not totally convinced those are exclusive choices. Because (a) just as an example . . . .  The main 120mm smooth bore gun on the new russian T14 MBT is in an unmanned automated turret and can target and fire a quite wide range of munitions (including antiair). and (b) a swarm can either be homogeneous or heterogeneous, and (c) with our military budgets we could have all kinds for the price of one aircraft carrier.

#2 on size - that can be defined on different parameters - tonnage, manpower, cost, force projection capability, etc. Tonnage is probably the least interesting of these metrics of size. Navy always has three environment . . . Blue, green and brown water.  And one scenario/proposal is (essentially) to match 3 drone base platforms to those three environments.  Another proposal is just one basic size, which are nested in a hive ship for blue water transits.  There are some pros and cons to both extreme, I have a personal opinion on size/delivery which is not quite either of those two, and includes also airborne and undersea capabilities.

But IB I expect you might have a more informed opinion than I on those questions.

 

 

 

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3 minutes ago, Whisper said:

LOL!  Yeah, just ask Beth Leonard.  Evans has never been in charge of a vessel, and never been near the sea.  He has no clue.

[end sarcasm]

Dude, really?

I have no idea who your hero is but his knowledge of the Col regs would surrgest that  he shouldn't be in command of anything with a gross tonnage greater than an Opti.

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7 minutes ago, Whisper said:

LOL!  Yeah, just ask Beth Leonard.  Evans has never been in charge of a vessel, and never been near the sea.  He has no clue.

[end sarcasm]

Dude, really?

And since the cat has his tounge maybe you can answer my question for him. Care to point out where the word 'commercial' appears in the Col regs? Or how the master of a recreational vessels actions would be different to a commercial vessel? Or where in the Col regs a turn to port is encoraged?

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5 minutes ago, LB 15 said:

I have no idea who your hero is but his knowledge of the Col regs would surrgest that  he shouldn't be in command of anything with a gross tonnage greater than an Opti.

That is a true fact.

Hint - this is like telling Bob Perry he can't draw ;)

(btw, commercial is heavy and slow to change course, Navy is high power and agile, thus you can do different things)

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7 minutes ago, LB 15 said:

I have no idea who your hero is but his knowledge of the Col regs would surrgest that  he shouldn't be in command of anything with a gross tonnage greater than an Opti.

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evans_Starzinger

He and his wife have a little experience on the sea and on accident investigation panels.  He can explain his thinking if he chooses.

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LB I have you on Ignore . . but to save Whisper the agro of answering you . . . . I was indicating that I thought the reaction of a containership (eg commercial) could be different than the reaction of a Destroyer. The containership will generally react with a turn as their best collision avoidance, while destroyer can combine speed change and turn.

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35 minutes ago, estarzinger said:

LB I have you on Ignore . . but to save Whisper the agro of answering you . . . . I was indicating that I thought the reaction of a containership (eg commercial) could be different than the reaction of a Destroyer. The containership will generally react with a turn as they best collision avoidance, while destroyer can combine speed change and turn.

Ah the old 'I have you on ignore but I am replying anyway'. What is it with you pussies and your ignore function? Can't you just scroll past something. But back to the topic, without knowing the angle of approach, nor the speed of the warship, nor knowing when the other vessel was detected, you are advising a turn to port. Again except as a last resort under actions of a stand on vessel, a turn to port, is about the worse advice you could give anyone. Do you put everyone on ignore that proves you wrong or should I feel special ?

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38 minutes ago, Whisper said:

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Evans_Starzinger

He and his wife have a little experience on the sea and on accident investigation panels.

They are experienced cruising sailors. Good for them, but how does that give them expert knowledge of the colregs? As someone who has been teaching them for 25 years and has appeared as an expert witness in several coreners inquiry's I can assure you his advice is wrong and should be ignored. He doesn't even appear to know enough to know he is wrong.

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As a former student at LB's school. I can tell you the correct thing to do is. 

1. Slam it in reverse

2. Full Starboard rudder

3. Assemble costumes 

4. Tell the boson to play your Jam

5. Slide past the bridge of the Container ship with metres to spare with all crew on the starboard decks dancing in sync to ....

 

 

 

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A turn to port is the always the last resort. If sit at the "green table" and a turn to port is in the record, you will lose in the eyes of the USCG.

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15 hours ago, SailBlueH2O said:

the Captains quarters was on the other side of a door on

the working bridge ....WTF...yeah he will take a career  hit and be referenced in USNA long after he is gone....gezzo oh pezzo....unless there are empty bottles of rum in his stateroom wreckage....let the man heal in retirement

 

15 hours ago, kinardly said:

This is why most Navy ship's captains rarely sleep in their cabins at sea. Maybe out in the open ocean they'll steal a few hours but whenever they are in constricted waters or in the vicinity of other vessels they mostly nap in their chair on the bridge. It's an awesome responsibility with drastic consequences if you slip up. Not for the faint hearted (or narcoleptic). 

Mostly "no" to both of you.  The Captain's quarters (remnants shown in the photo above) are two decks below the bridge, down the starboard ladder.  Some larger ships (aircraft carriers, etc) have an at-sea cabin near the bridge (basically a small closet for sleeping); most of the ship classes in the fleet don't do that.

"Rarely sleep in their cabins at sea" - we'd all be quite sleep deprived if we did that.  I agree that's true in constricted waters, but recall that the grey ships spend months at sea, most of it well outside 12 NM.  I have napped in my chair on the bridge, but only when doing something like the Bab El Mendeb or Suez approaches.  Offshore?  That's what qualified watchkeepers are for.

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6 hours ago, sailronin said:

A turn to port is the always the last resort.

Rule 17 (dont turn to port) relates to the stand on vessel.  The hypothetical question above was action with respect to a give way vessel. And it is not a 'head-on' hypothetical (where stb is also general rule) - was a behind the beam crossing hypothetical. 

The hypothetical question had the stand on (crossing) vessel behind the beam, so a turn to starboard by give way would have been right across her bows.  Trying to sneak across stand on's bows in a collision situation is rather discouraged - rule 15 (avoid crossing ahead of the other vessel.) In the hypothetical, a port turn by give way and a starboard turn by stand-on would diverge the two vessels and create more time, which are both desired.

Yes, I agree starboard by general preference, but stand-on's obligation is to prevent the collision as cleanly as possible, and in the hypothetical (as I interpreted it) that was port.  You can interpret it differently and come to a different answer - a problem with limited detail hypotheticals.

 

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12 minutes ago, Rail Meat said:

Don't muddy this thread with actual fact or experience. 

 

Far more believable is the heroic image of the sleep deprived captain never abandoning his bridge.

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