Metro Detroit native missing after USS John S. McCain collision in Pacific

Posted August 23, 2017

Amphibious assault ship USS America (LHA 6) arrived August 21 at Changi Naval Base, Republic of Singapore and is moored across the pier from the guided-missile destroyer USS John S. McCain (DDG 56). McCain sustained damage on its port side aft, or left rear, from the collision with the Alnic MC on Sunday, the Navy's 7th Fleet said.

There are now 10 Sailors missing and five injured.

"While the U.S. Navy is becoming a risky obstacle in Asian waters, China has been making joint efforts with the members of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations to draw up a Code of Conduct for the South China Sea and it has boosted navigational safety by constructing five lighthouses on its islands", the China Daily said.

"We will continue the search and rescue operations until the probability of discovering sailors is exhausted", Swift said.

Ten sailors have been missing since the McCain and a Liberian-flagged oil tanker - more than three times the destroyer's size - collided at the entrance to the Strait of Malacca before dawn on Monday.

This was the second major accident involving a U.S. warship in two months.

The San Diego-based Champlain was operating in the western Pacific for the first half of the year as part of the 3rd Fleet's USS Carl Vinson aircraft carrier strike group.

"This trend demands more forceful action", Adm. John Richardson, chief of naval operations, said.

The destroyer was making a routine port stop in Singapore and the tanker was carrying about 12,000 tons of crude oil to Singapore from Taiwan.

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The guided-missile destroyer and the merchant vessel collided Monday east of the Malacca Strait, the fourth time a U.S. warship has been involved in an accident in Asian waters this year. They are still working to recover the body and transfer them to the U.S. Navy for identification.

He said it was "quite extraordinary" for the McCain to be "up and running as an operational ship nearly immediately after the collision".

Following the collision, the McCain sailed under her own power to Changi Naval Base in Singapore. "It is clear that their damage control efforts saved their ship and saved lives".

He also added that it would be sequenced in such a way that the U.S. Navy "will maintain its primary responsibility of defending our homeland and the homelands of our allies".

The U.S. Navy has also deployed divers within the damaged ship to access and search flooded compartments.

Swift said Tuesday evening that while he has so far not seen any evidence of a cyberattack, the Navy would still investigate that possibility.

A senior admiral announced last week that the commander of the destroyer and several other officers had been relieved of their duties aboard their ship over the incident. The ship is named for his grandfather John Sidney McCain Sr. and his father, John Sidney McCain Jr.

In a statement last week, the 7th Fleet said the June 17 collision "was avoidable, and both ships demonstrated poor seamanship".