Navy dismisses 7th fleet commander after warship accidents


The U.S. Navy dismissed the commander of the Asia-based mostly seventh Fleet on Wednesday after a collection of warship accidents raised questions on its operations within the Pacific.

  • Navy dismisses seventh fleet commander Vice. Adm. Joseph Aucoin
  • Transfer follows four Navy accidents in Pacific since late January
  • Rear Adm. Phillip Sawyer to imagine command instantly

A two-sentence assertion stated Adm. Scott Swift, commander of the U.S. Pacific Fleet, had relieved Vice Adm. Joseph Aucoin “as a result of a lack of confidence in his capacity to command.”

The transfer follows 4 Navy accidents within the Pacific since late January, together with two collisions that left sailors lifeless and lacking.

“Whereas every of those 4 incidents is exclusive, they can’t be seen in isolation,” Swift stated earlier.

He stated the Navy will perform a “deliberate re-set” of all its ships within the Pacific, targeted on navigation, mechanical techniques and bridge useful resource administration. It’ll embrace coaching and an skilled evaluation of every ship.

The Navy stated that Rear Adm. Phillip Sawyer, who had already been named as Aucoin’s successor, would assume command instantly.

On Monday, the destroyer USS John S. McCain and an oil tanker collided off Singapore, injuring 5 sailors and leaving 10 others lacking. Seven sailors died in June when the destroyer USS Fitzgerald collided with a container ship off Japan.

Swift, talking Tuesday at a information convention in Singapore the place the McCain is now docked, stated Navy divers had discovered stays of a number of the lacking in a flooded compartment within the ship. He additionally stated Malaysians aiding within the search had discovered a physique, however it had not been decided if it was a McCain crew member.

The seventh Fleet stated in a press release Wednesday that Navy and Marine Corps divers are persevering with to look flooded compartments within the McCain within the hope of finding extra of the lacking sailors. The ocean-based mostly search east of Singapore “is increasing to embody a larger space as time goes on,” it stated.

Singapore’s authorities stated the search space greater than doubled Wednesday to about 5,500 sq. kilometers (2,one hundred twenty sq. miles) with plane and vessels deployed by the U.S., Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia and Australia.

At the least 5 of the ten lacking sailors have been recognized by relations.

Crew member Logan Palmer is from the Decatur, Illinois, space and his mom recognized him as lacking, U.S. Rep. Rodney Davis stated.

April Brandon in Michigan stated the army knowledgeable her that her son, Ken Smith, is lacking. She stated Smith’s father, stepmother and grandfather served within the Navy. Brandon stated, “His father and I could not be prouder of our son.”

The household of Jacob Drake of Ohio was informed he was among the many lacking, the Columbus Dispatch reported. Megan Partlow informed The Related Press that Drake was her fiance and she or he final had contact with him Sunday in a textual content message.

Relations of Dustin Doyon from Connecticut confirmed that he was among the many lacking. Native police stated the Navy was in communication with…



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