10 U.S. Navy sailors missing after destroyer collides with oil tanker

10 U.S. Navy sailors missing after destroyer collides with oil tanker


Ten Navy sailors were missing and five were injured on Monday after a U.S. destroyer collided with an oil tanker off the coast of Singapore, the U.S. Navy said, the second incident involving a Navy ship and a cargo vessel in recent months.

The guided-missile destroyer, the USS John S. McCain, was passing through the Strait of Malacca on its way to a port in Singapore at 6:24 a.m. local time when it collided with the Alnic MC, a 600-foot vessel that transports oil and chemicals, the Navy said. The destroyer was damaged near the rear on its port, or left-hand, side.

Ten sailors on the ship were unaccounted for, and five others had minor injuries, a Navy official said. Ships with the Singapore navy and helicopters from the USS America, an assault ship, were searching the waters for survivors.

The extent of the damage to both ships was unclear. The Navy said the destroyer was moving with assistance from tugboats and was returning to port.

The Strait of Malacca, between the Malay Peninsula and the Indonesian island of Sumatra, is notoriously difficult to navigate because of congested traffic and episodes of piracy over the years.

The collision came two months after one of the Navy’s deadliest incidents in years, when another destroyer, the USS Fitzgerald, collided with a freighter off Japan. Seven people on the Fitzgerald were killed, and the Navy relieved the destroyer’s two top officers of their duties on Friday after an investigation into the collision. That freighter was 728 feet long.

The McCain and the Fitzgerald are both in the Seventh Fleet and are based in Yokosuka, Japan.

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