Five of seven crew members of destroyer instantly died
Five of the seven Navy sailors who died aboard the guided-missile destroyer USS "Fitzgerald" when it collided with the "ACX Crystal" off the East coast of Japan may have been almost instantly incapacitated and died quickly, according to a preliminary Navy analysis. That assessment was based on an examination of the point of impact and the berths in which the sailors were likely sleeping. The Navy was trying to corroborate accounts which suggested that the two sailors who weren't almost instantly incapacitated attempted to help the other five escape the incoming water.
But at some point the ship somehow lost communication, with the two sailors and they also perished, according to the official. All seven were found dead in the flooded area.
The collision occurred very close to the cabin of Cmdr. Bryce Benson, and he was briefly unable to get out. The crew helped him to the bridge, but he was so badly injured that he had to be medevaced off the ship and the second in command took over.
The US Navy, the US Coast Guard, and Japanese naval and maritime authorities were all conducting investigations.
An early assessment suggested the container ship might have been on some type of autopilot system at the time of the collision which does not explain how and why the crew of the USS "Fitzgerald" did not see the other ship coming, or why they were unable to maneuver away from it.
Initial reports suggest that the collision occurred at 1:30 a.m., but the container ship crew did not automatically realize it had happened. The container ship turned back, and it appeared the collision was then formally reported around 2:20 a.m. To help determine what happened, investigators will download radar data from the ship's Aegis weapons system, which records routine details on position, course, speed and any nearby ships or aircraft. Navigation and radar data will also be gathered from the cargo ship.
Another factor being examined was the impact of the destruction of the "Fitzgerald"'s communications gear on the ability of the crew to call back to shore to inform commanders they needed help. Preliminary analysis indicated the collision occurred where the ship's communication nodes were housed and the crew had t use satellite based cell phones to communicate both on board and back to shore.
The "Veteran" was drydocked in St. John's on June 19, 2017, where it was being repaired for ice damage to its hull. Repairs will take approximately two to three weeks. The ferry had been replaced by the "Legionnaire" on the Fogo Island and Change Islands run in the meantime. The ice around Fogo Island was still thick. The ice conditions this season have been challenging. The repair was expected to cost $350,000.
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The Kieler Woche sailing regatta – the biggest maritime folk festival and sail sport event in northern Europe – is a big draw for cruise ships as well as many other vessels. Between June 17-25 Kiel expects visits by a total of 15 different luxury liners.
Dr Dirk Claus, Managing Director of the PORT OF KIEL (SEEHAFEN KIEL GmbH & Co. KG) said, “The Kieler Woche – with its sailing competitions and cultural program and even as a marine meeting opportunity – has always been an international event. The cruise ships fit into this context very well and also provide their guests with a unique visitor experience”
On Wednesday, June 21, Cunard’s Queen Elizabeth and P&O’s Arcadia berthed side by side at the Ostseekai Cruise Terminal. The Queen Elizabeth arrived in the Kiel Fiord in the morning from St Petersburg, Russia, while the Arcadia arrived at the same time from Skagen in Denmark. Well over 3,000 English-speaking passengers used the occasion to see Kiel from its most beautiful side. Arcadia left for the Swedish capital Stockholm in the evening while the Queen Elizabeth also cast off in the evening for Southampton.
The port’s berths were well occupied as early as the first Saturday of the Kieler Woche when two ocean-going cruise ships and three river cruise ships arrived – along with the big ferry ships of the Color Line, DFDS and the Stena Line.
“The Kieler Woche is one of the biggest highlights of the cruise shipping season”, said Claus, “both as far as the number of ships and the passenger totals are concerned. During peak periods more than 15,000 travellers embark or disembark from ships at the port’s different terminal facilities.”
To date during this year’s Kieler Woche, visitors to the Kiel Fiord have included TUI Cruises’ latest addition Mein Schiff 6, as well as three ships from AIDA Cruises – the AIDAvita, the AIDAcara and the AIDAbella. On Friday, June 23, there will be an encounter in Kiel between two sister ships. Phoenix Seereisen’s Albatros and Fred. Olsen’s Cruise Line’s Black Watch will meet at the Ostseekai Terminal. On Saturday the port is expecting the MSC Fantasia and on Sunday, the closing day of the Kieler Woche, the fourth AIDA ship of the season – the AIDAluna – will arrive. As well as the big oceangoing cruise liners, four river cruise ships were visiting Kiel this year and all of them were spending several days in the port.
Overall 28 different cruise ships are this year scheduled to visit the port a total of 142 times. In close proximity to the City centre Kiel has three modern and high-capacity terminal facilities available for ferry and cruise ships. In addition cruise ships can exchange passengers at Berth 1 in the Ostuferhafen. This year, more than two million passengers are again expected to board or leave a ferry or cruise ship and about half a million of them will be cruise ship passengers. The total tonnage of cruise ships calling at Kiel will rise by a good 7 percent to more than 10 million GT for the first time. The shipping company with the most visits to Kiel this year is AIDA Cruises which is offering 50 trips from the port. It is followed by TUI Cruises with 26 calls by Mein Schiff 3 and Mein Schiff 6 and MSC with 21 visits by the MSC Fantasia. On no fewer than seven days during the season, three or sometimes even four cruise ships will berth in addition to the Baltic ferries and dominate the port scene.
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Dredger suffered severe water ingress at yard in Kinderdijk
On June 20, 2016, the Indian flagged trailing suction hopper dredger "Shanti Sagar 17" (IMO: 9802451) suffered water ingress at the Royal IHC yard in Kinderdijk. The water was about 1,5 meters high inside the vessel. The workers aboard were able to flee from the rising water in time. The accident occurred during a test of the ship that is under construction at IHC for the Indian dredging company Adani. Due to the large amount of water that came in, the ship was threatened to sink. The fire brigade led the evacuation. After a valve was sealed, the fire fighters managed to pump out the water. The damage was immense. The shipbuilder was now trying to find out the cause of the water ingress, but did not materially address it. There was no question of sabotage. The casco of the "Shanti Sagar 17" was launched at the yard in Krimpen aan den IJssel at the end of March and was fitted out in Kinderdijk.
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