Vessel that Struck USS Fitzgerald Was On Autopilot

Vessel that Struck USS Fitzgerald Was On Autopilot

Vessel that Struck USS Fitzgerald Was On Autopilot

In this Saturday, June 17, 2017, photo, the damaged Philippine-registered container ship ACX Crystal, right, cruises past another container ship off Yokosuka, south of Tokyo, after colliding with the USS Fitzgerald off Japan earlier in the day, that killed seven US sailors. "This process will unfold as quickly as possible, but it's important to get this right".

"The ACX Crystal powered out of the deviation it performed at 1:30 a.m., which was likely the impact with the USS Fitzgerald, pushing it off course while trying to free itself from being hung on the bow below the waterline", private naval analyst Steffan Watkins told the Washington Free Beacon in a report published Friday. Therefore, the starboard side was completely crushed, and its superstructure was penetrated.

The Navy was trying to corroborate accounts which suggested that the two sailors who weren't nearly instantly incapacitated attempted to help the other five escape the incoming water.

USS Fitzgerald returns to Fleet Activities Yokosuka following the collision off the coast of Japan.

The Fitzgerald is equipped with the AN/SPS-64 advanced military navigation radar, and also uses a commercial radar system to enhance the shipping traffic picture of ships in its vicinity. AIS, a tracking system that has become the "Internet of Ships", was meant to help prevent such collisions, but it has also become a tool for almost anyone to identify and track ships traveling around the world through websites and mobile applications.

Additionally, all commercial ships over 300 tons are required under global rules to operate AIS location data.

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In Yokosuka, Japan, on Sunday, the US Navy and the Japanese Coast Guard have called off their search operation as they found their missing sailor's bodies in the ship's flooded portions, which was one of the most doubted places.

U.S. Navy Vice Adm. Joseph Aucoin said an unspecified number of sailors were on watch duty the night of the collision.

The ship's captain, Cmdr.

Three crew members were injured and had to be flown to Japan by helicopter for medical treatment, including the destroyer's captain, Commander Bryce Benson. Two other injured sailors also were evacuated. That means there's no current public record of the Fitzgerald's actions prior to the collision, and the crew of the Crystal would not have received a collision alarm from the system on their bridge.

The U.S. Navy vessel, a guided missile destroyer, was hit by the ACX Crystal after it made a u-turn on June 17, Reuters reported.

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