Monday, August 28, 2017

More on the USS McCain and other Navy ship “accidents”



By navypatriot

A few days ago, Aug 23, I sent a post explaining the workings on the navigation bridge of a typical Naval Vessel.  A few of my fellow Naval Veterans corrected me on something.  We never referred to our Officer on the bridge as the OIC (Officer in Charge).  His title was OOD!  (Officer of the Day)  Sorry, I knew that, but must have had a brain fart!  I also was incorrect on the number of personnel involved on a vessel the size of a CRUISER or DESTROYER.  I should have known better!

My navigation experience was mostly aboard the USS PENGUIN (ASR-12), short for Submarine Rescue ship.  We were somewhat close to a tugboat in appearance.  We were 205' long with a peacetime crew of around 44.  A typical CRUISER is 567' long with a crew of 330.  A typical DESTROYER is 509' long with a crew of about the same.  Visually, to the untrained eye, they are very similar.

With crews that size, there were usually positions for about 12-15 people on the bridge.  I don't think that many people would fit on the Penguin bridge and besides, it would be close to 1/4 of our entire crew!

This correction to my synopsis makes matters even worse!  With that many people, supposedly awake, how in Hell could someone NOT notice a modern cargo ship bearing down on them?

The USS ANTIETAM (CG-54) ran aground near Tokyo in January.  As I recall, all ships have Sonar and Fathometers (depth finders) on the bridge.  When in shallow waters, we actually had a man on the bow with a lead line (a marked line with a lead weight) checking depth!  Sound a little ancient?  Well, we never ran aground!  You see, electronics can fail and in shallow water, it can be hazardous!

On May 9, the USS LAKE CHAMPLAIN (CG-57) was struck by a 70' fishing vessel off the coast of South Korea.  The fishermen later said that they had no radio on board and therefore never got any warning!  I think that could be BS, but there was no serious damage to the CG and there were no injuries.  BUT, when the Captain and crew could actually SEE this vessel coming and NOT responding to radio warnings, why not BLOW THE HORN?  They could have heard that in SEOUL!!  Even a bullhorn could have alerted the fishing vessel!  Another option would be to change course and/or speed to avoid an imminent collision.

Next was the USS FITZGERALD (DDG-62).  She was hit by a merchant ship the size of a warehouse.  This time it was on the opposite side and the merchant ship kept going!  Nothing was reported for hours!

We already covered the McCAIN.  Now put all four together.  Could one of these "accidents" happen aboard one ship?  Sure. But what are the odds of these happening to FOUR vessels in the same Fleet Area of Operation??

I have my theory, for all it is worth.  I was fortunate enough to be invited aboard the USS HUE CITY for a family cruise.  While there, I spent most of my time on the bridge, along with their bridge watch.  In my day, the QM had a table to keep his charts on.  This ship had none.  EVERYTHING on that bridge was electronic!  It seems the charts are on electronic TV screens!  Too much automation and not enough personal responsibility!  In time of warfare if the power was lost onboard any of our ships, they would be lost!  How long could batteries keep up a shipload of electronics and other necessitates?  No one could tell me if they even had a sextant, much less whether anyone knew how to use one!  It's old school and QM in my day was trained on one.  And NO, I was not aboard the Mayflower, the Nina, Pinta OR Santa Maria!

Preliminary investigation seems to show a possibility of some unknown force hacking the GPS systems on the McCain and Fitzgerald.  OK.  Let's say that is true.  It would NOT have affected the lookouts, unless they were robots.  

Could those ‘robots’ be more like Obama-bots?  One of his goals was to destroy our military.  Why not plant some of those 30,000 followers in the Deep State onboard our ships?  It would only take a dozen or so on each ship to sabotage them.  Maybe I am stretching things.  I hope I’m wrong, but I don't believe we have ever witnessed 4 ship accidents in such a short period of time in our history!

More later.......




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