The United States Navy is going into an “operational pause” after the USS John McCain collided with a with a merchant ship in Singapore, killing 10 sailors.
It is the second destroyer to collide with a commercial vessel in two months, prompting the Navy to order all ships to pause operations while officials investigate whether a larger problem exists. The USS Fitzgerald collided with a vessel in the Philippines June 17, killing seven sailors.
“This trend demands more forceful action,” U.S. Navy Admiral John Richardson announced in a video posted Monday to Twitter and the U.S. Navy website.
“As such, I’ve directed an operational pause be taken in all of our fleets around the world. I want our fleet commanders to get together with their leaders and their commands to ensure that we’re taking all appropriate immediate actions to ensure safe and effective operations around the world.
“In addition to that operational pause, I’ve directed a more comprehensive review, to ensure sure that we get at the contributing factors, the root causes, of these incidents. This review is in addition to the investigations that are looking into the details of collisions of the USSS Fitzgerald and now the USS John McCain.”
The series of collisions comes at a time when the U.S. Navy faces tremendous challenges in East Asia, as noted by experts on national defense and Chinese aggression.
#China is feverishly building PLA #Navy to 351 ships by 2020. Meanwhile, @USNavy can’t stop running our warships into things.
#USSJohnSMcCain,” tweeted Brett M. Decker, former editor for The Wall Street Journal and The Washington Times, and author of the New York Times best-seller “The Case for Trump” and “Bowing to Beijing.”
— BrettMDecker (@BrettMDecker) August 22, 2017