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Posted: 11/16/2002 2:34:23 AM EDT
The US Navy says: [url]http://www.news.navy.mil/search/display.asp?story_id=4555[/url] USS Oklahoma City Collides With Vessel Story Number: NNS021113-13 Release Date: 11/14/2002 7:48:00 PM From the Navy News Service GAETA, Italy (NNS) -- No Sailors were injured when the U.S. Navy submarine USS Oklahoma City (SSN 723) came into brief contact with another vessel while transiting the western Mediterranean Sea east of the Strait of Gibraltar Nov. 13. The accident occurred in international waters at approximately 1:30 p.m. (GMT). At the time of the incident, the submarine was proceeding to periscope depth. Preliminary reports indicate the Oklahoma City's sail made brief contact with another vessel's hull. The submarine surfaced and located a merchant vessel in close proximity. Oklahoma City attempted to make radio contact with the other vessel. However, the other vessel did not respond and did not appear to need assistance, and departed the area. Oklahoma City continued to search the area for other vessels in the vicinity. Oklahoma City will return to port for further inspection of damage and repairs. There were no injuries aboard Oklahoma City, and the damage appears to be limited to the submarine's periscope and sail area. An investigation is underway. Norway's largest newspaper reports the "gas-tanker", Norman Lady, was on the way to Trinidad from Barcelona when it collided with an American Nuclear Submarine which was heading for the surface. The ship is now heading for Gibraltar for repairs. Was the sonar crew sleeping? [;)] [:p]
Link Posted: 11/16/2002 3:45:15 AM EDT
At the time of the incident, the submarine was proceeding to periscope depth.
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I'm assuming the sub was "proceeding" UP to periscope depth, since hitting the tanker while in the process of submerging would have been even stupider...
Link Posted: 11/16/2002 3:49:22 AM EDT
Perhaps Osama is getting porn to show up on the pilots dive screen. That's 2 incidents now in what, two or three years, unheard of, must be more traffic than ever before or the Chinese batteries (made in some Reps district) are failing prematurely . That's what she said, periscope up sailor and come to mama, the Pope wants more people. hehehe Go Navy!
Link Posted: 11/16/2002 3:53:47 AM EDT
Coming to periscope depth is the most dangerous time for a sub. Still, hitting a tanker just doesn't make any sense as tankers are emitting plenty of noise. Wondering if there is more to this story ??
Link Posted: 11/16/2002 4:04:11 AM EDT
Originally Posted By Cardinal: Was the sonar crew sleeping? [;)] [:p]
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I'm a former submarine sonarman and the sonar gang would have to at 'least' sleeping !! The most likely thing to happened would have been a loss of depth control as the sub moved to periscope depth. (I could envision some real freaky water conditions that would camouflage the tanker until the last minute but these conditions would be so rare as to not even count.) Again, I wonder if there's more we don't know.
Link Posted: 11/16/2002 4:23:16 AM EDT
Divers found rift(s?) 2-3 meters long and 0.5 meters wide in the Tanker. I find that curious if only the periscope hit the hull, but it is perhaps possible?
Link Posted: 11/16/2002 4:31:08 AM EDT
First, the sonar crew was most assuredly NOT sleeping. Depending on the water conditions prevailing at that time, it might have been extremely difficult for the sub to hear the ship until she had attained periscope depth (PD). At PD, the sail of the sub is close enough to the surface that the ship could collide with it. This type of water condition is fairly common in ocean areas like the Med with cold upwelling water and a bright sun which heats the surface and creates a warmer surface layer effect. The cross-layer effect on the sonar performance can be significant and may greatly reduce the detection ranges due to reflection and refraction of the sound waves through and between the layers. This phenomenon is explained by Snell's Law (n1 sin < = n2 sin <). The net effect would be that the ship would be harder to detect on the sub's sonar (The corollary is of course that a surface warship searching for the sub will have the same difficulty...which is why the sub always has the advantage, since he lives down there!). United States Navy Submarines have very strict and detailed procedures for coming to PD, including a complete sonar search "all around" and manning the periscope while constantly turning it around and around as the scope breaks the surface. If the upcoming investigation reveals that all regs and procedures were followed exactly as required, and that the water condictions were such that it was a virtual impossibility for the sub to detect the ship then culpability may not be assigned to anyone in the sub's crew. On the other hand...and unfortunately I suspect this may be the case, IF someone screwed up...either due to a lack of training, failure to follow procedure correctly, or simply lack of attention to detail, then someone will hang. In any case, if the submarine squadron commander who is the skipper's boss, decides he no longer has confidence in the skipper to command his ship, then that CO is gone no matter what, even pending the results of the investigation. Later, some other officers may follow. A Navy ship's commanding officer has immense authority, not found anywhere else in our society, even in the other branches of the military. The job also carries with it some pretty good perks and a great level of peer respect. On the other hand, the job also carries with it some awesome responsibilities and absolute accountability for that ship and it's crew. That man IS the ship. If his ship screws up...HE screws up. The penalties for a mistake like this are incredibly draconian and are imposed with a chilling finality.
Link Posted: 11/16/2002 4:45:06 AM EDT
Originally Posted By Cardinal: Divers found rift(s?) 2-3 meters long and 0.5 meters wide in the Tanker. I find that curious if only the periscope hit the hull, but it is perhaps possible?
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I expect the top of the sail hit the bottom of the tanker. The scope/s would have hit also if extended.
Link Posted: 11/16/2002 4:52:33 AM EDT
Originally Posted By LWilde: First, the sonar crew was most assuredly NOT sleeping.
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That was meant as a joke, which is why I added those smilies at the end. I didn't assign blame. But from what Ive read on US subs, specifically the 688I class, I find it hard to understand how they didn't detect the tanker miles away. I therefore tend to think that 5subslr5 may be correct in his theory...
Link Posted: 11/16/2002 5:22:59 AM EDT
Originally Posted By Cardinal: But from what Ive read on US subs, specifically the 688I class, I find it hard to understand how they didn't detect the tanker miles away.
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What LWilde described, a layer/s, could drastically reduce the surface ship's ability (if sonar equipped) to locate the sub and the sub's ability to hear the surface ship. I had no experience in the Med as my seven+ years was all in the Pacific. Just for grins let's say there was a significant layer beginning at 90 feet and the sub had its' towed array stowed or the array was below the thermocline. (It would most likely have been below.) The sub's bow-mounted sonar array would have popped above the 90 foot thermocline 'after' the sail had gone above the layer. We just don't have enough info to know much. How fast was each vessel going ?? What was the aspect, angle-on-the-bow, of the tanker to the sub ?? Was there a layer ?? Where was the layer if there was a layer ?? I'm still of the opinion that water conditions would have to have been almost freakish (read possible but not probable) for the Oklahoma City to have failed to detect a tanker in plenty of time to maneuver. I'm still betting that some type of lost depth control is the most likely cause - not failure to detect the tanker. The odds strongly favor the captain's career being toast.
Link Posted: 11/16/2002 5:55:44 AM EDT
Were talking tanker here not some tuna boat, if the our equipment can't detect a tanker what the hell good is it, water temp be damned, someone call Radio Shack and get this bullshit fixed.
Link Posted: 11/16/2002 6:14:14 AM EDT
I thought only cruisers were named after cities?? subsailor???
Link Posted: 11/16/2002 6:56:41 AM EDT
[Last Edit: 11/16/2002 6:58:37 AM EDT by Arock]
Originally Posted By liberty86: I thought only cruisers were named after cities?? subsailor???
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Dallas is a Fast Attack. SSN700 of the Los Angeles class.
Link Posted: 11/16/2002 7:53:49 AM EDT
That's just what we need a fast sub that doesn't no where the hell it is or where it's going. Brilliant !!!! Sounds like a good boat to play the game battleship with, If it can't tell where the hell it is how could the enemy? Hummmmm
Link Posted: 11/16/2002 8:20:16 AM EDT
Originally Posted By liberty86: I thought only cruisers were named after cities?? subsailor???
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That was correct until the Navy needed funding for more submarines and someone thought naming them after cities might help. Does seem odd to be sitting here in Oklahoma City giving an opinion on a sub named for Oklahoma City.
Link Posted: 11/16/2002 8:22:09 AM EDT
Originally Posted By AK_STALLION: That's just what we need a fast sub that doesn't no where the hell it is or where it's going. Brilliant !!!! Sounds like a good boat to play the game battleship with, If it can't tell where the hell it is how could the enemy? Hummmmm
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Do I detect the sounds of a dumb-ass ?
Link Posted: 11/16/2002 8:33:25 AM EDT
Radioshack ain't good for shit.....you'd have to call digikey [;D] but that's another topic. I agree wtih 5subslr5; that captain's career is probably toast. FOTBR
Link Posted: 11/16/2002 8:37:57 AM EDT
Originally Posted By liberty86: I thought only cruisers were named after cities?? subsailor???
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USS Tucson (ssn 770), USS Charlotte, USS Annapolis,... ALL of the Los angeles class subs are named after cities (With the exception being the USS hymen g rickover...) I was on shore duty when the Greenville smacked that Japanese fishing boat. Sad day.
Link Posted: 11/16/2002 8:45:04 AM EDT
No 5subslr you detecting the subs errant sonar in you pants.
Link Posted: 11/16/2002 8:50:22 AM EDT
Well, sometimes our subs like to hide under slow moving, noisy merchant ships to mask their presence. Perhaps they were practicing that? But that still begs the question why they surfaced while remaining on the same course the tanker was following, instead of turning aside. Unless it was a complete freak and the tanker made a turn in the exact same direction as the sub after the sub had already comitted to surfacing.
Link Posted: 11/16/2002 9:04:49 AM EDT
As much as it sucks, the CO will no longer be in command. His XO will probably take charge if the Dept Of the Navy find that the CO was negligent. I find it extremely disturbing to see the World's finest Navy, continue to collide into other ships. The 3/4's of the Earth is water and some may wonder how is it possible to hit another ship? It's easy really, if one is the OOD and is transiting in crowded waters, the chances of hitting are good. You figure 10 knots and the other ship is going at least that if not faster and they both have the same bearing or something, if someone is not paying attention accidents do happen. The Helmsman was probably pretty shook up about this. Same with the OOD and Chief of the Watch. An investigation will be done no doubt. Max
Link Posted: 11/16/2002 9:27:25 AM EDT
That's patently unfair. The Tanker captain will suffer no such consequences and I bet he was taken totally off guard. [:)]Can you imagine him scrambling to check his charts after hitting that little speed bump?
Link Posted: 11/16/2002 10:01:48 AM EDT
Being that it was the Oklahoma the tax money for the sonar and a few other thingys was squandered and misappropriated and left off the ship and our state officials, who were responsible for the money, thought who will ever find out......[rolleyes]
Link Posted: 11/16/2002 11:28:02 AM EDT
Originally Posted By ArmdLbrl: Well, sometimes our subs like to hide under slow moving, noisy merchant ships to mask their presence. Perhaps they were practicing that? But that still begs the question why they surfaced while remaining on the same course the tanker was following, instead of turning aside
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Good thought. Still, to hit the tanker, some sort of depth control loss would have been necessary. (And that ain't hard.)
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