It turns out the Navy may have skipped some key training with its collision-prone Pacific fleet
The Seventh Fleet may have a severe readiness problem, according to a government watchdog.
The warfare training certifications for eight out of eleven US Navy destroyers and cruisers based in Japan, home to the US Seventh Fleet, expired as of June, according to CNN, which cites an unpublished report from the Government Accountability Office. The certificates were for mobility and seamanship, air warfare, and undersea warfare.
For a number of these ships, the training certificates expired as seven sailors died aboard the USS Fitzgerald and another 10 perished on board the USS John McCain after massive merchant vessels struck the ships.
The fatal collisions are part of a string of serious incidents that have occurred over the past year. Both of the collisions are under investigation.
The Philippine-flagged container vessel ACX Crystal slammed into the side of the Arleigh Burke-class guided missile destroyer USS Fitzgerald before dawn June 17 in waters off Japan. Two months later, on Aug. 21, the oil tanker Alnic MC collided with the Arleigh Burke-class guided missile destroyer USS John McCain near Singapore. Ten sailors were killed in the second incident, bringing the number of American sailors killed in the two accidents up to 17.
In the wake of the most recent collision, the Navy decided to relieve Vice Admiral Joseph Aucoin, commander of the Seventh Fleet, of his command due to a lack of confidence in his leadership.
The Seventh Fleet handles most naval operations in the Pacific, from pressuring North Korea to freedom-of-navigation operations in the South China Sea. The USS John McCain had actually just completed a freedom-of-navigation operation just prior to the collision.
Preliminary reports on the incident involving the USS Fitzgerald attributed the crash to poor seamanship. While the incidents are still under investigation, there have long been readiness concerns as the size of the fleet decreased while the number of ships deployed remained constant, with the length of deployments increasing.
“The Navy has had to shorten, eliminate, or defer training and maintenance periods to support these high deployment rates,” John Pendleton, director of the GAO defense capabilities and management, said in his written testimony, according to CNN.
“Navy officials told us that US-based crews are completely qualified and certified prior to deploying from their US homeports, with few exceptions,” he added. “In contrast, the high operational tempo of ships homeported overseas had resulted in what Navy personnel called a ‘train on the margins’ approach, a shorthand way to say there was no dedicated training time set aside for the ships so crews trained while underway or in the limited time between underway periods.”
- Dodd-Frank Tipped The Scale In The Wrong Direction
- Desperate Dem Opponent Compares Roy Moore To Segregationist
- Obama Records Get-Out-The-Vote Call For Doug Jones
- Ellen DeGeneres Evacuates Home Due To Wildfire
- Happy Birthday John Kerry! Thanks For The Memories [SLIDESHOW]
- Trump’s EPA Says NYT ‘Distorted The Facts’ In Its Latest Article
Follow @DailyCaller on Twitter .
Enlisted pilots could fly in combat for the first time since WWII
A number of reasons for pilot shortage include quality-of-life issues, recruitment by private airlines, and the strain of three decades of combat.
Everything you need to know about the Merchant Marine
The United States Merchant Marine is not a military service, but without it, the Army, Navy, Air Force, Coast Guard, and Marine Corps couldn't go anywhere.
That time 'Fighting Dick' fought 'Fightin' Dick' at Antietam
Rarely will a moniker be used for two military leader at the same time. Even more rare is if the two meet on opposite ends of the battlefield.
6 ways you can tell a troop isn't an infantryman
Enter any base you may wonder which one of the troops fight in combat vs. those who ship off to support the war effort Well; we've got you covered.
British Paratroopers and Gurkhas got into a huge battle royale in Kenya
A force-on-force exercise is under investigation for "descending into chaos" as some of the UK's best troops fought each other with fists and clubs.
This insane anti-aircraft gun chased the Israelis out of the sky
With four radar-guided 23mm cannon, the ZSU-23-4 Shilka could hit an aircraft almost two miles away hard with up to 1,000 rounds a minute.
7 military nicknames that are definitely not compliments
If you've got a nickname, you're either high enough rank to have earned one, you're a pilot, or you did something dumb enough to earn one of these.
8 Things your civilian resume needs to have right now
Checklists make life easier. This checklist will help you avoid some common pitfalls veterans make when trying to land that first job when they get out.
Why so many in the military are getting STDs
Cases of sexually transmitted diseases areon the rise across the U.S., but it's three to six times more common among troops. Let's talk about why.