The US Navy has sacked two senior commanders from a warship that was involved in a fatal crash with an oil tanker near Singapore.
In August, the USS John McCain collided with an oil tanker near Singapore, which resulted in the deaths of 10 USA sailors and injuries of five others.
The ship suffered damage to its side after colliding with the Liberian-flagged Alnic MC in the early hours, but sailed under its own power and arrived at the Changi naval base in Singapore with a large hole torn in its hull. Sanchez, the executive officer, were relieved of their duties and reassigned. At the time, Vice Admiral Joseph Aucoin was relieved of his command of the Navy's 7th Fleet in a rare instance of the military firing a high-ranking officer.
Admiral Swift said the collisions involving US Navy ships can not be viewed in isolation and that it was the organisation's goal to find out whether there is a common cause underlying the uptick.
The McCain collision occurred a couple months after the USS Fitzgerald, also a guided-missile destroyer in the 7th Fleet, collided with a container ship near Tokyo, resulting in seven dead sailors. In January, the USS Antietam ran aground near Yokosuka base in Japan, and in May the USS Lake Champlain had a minor collision with a South Korean fishing boat.
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The Mathews family adopted the girl two years ago at an orphanage in India and she was malnourished when the couple took her in. An Amber Alert was issued and then later canceled due to lack of new information, for the girl, identified as Sherin Williams.
Cmdr. A. Sanchez was reassigned to Commander, Naval Forces Japan (CNFJ) and Cmdr.
In its statement, the US Seventh Fleet insisted the incident was "preventable".
While the investigation is ongoing, it is evident the collision was preventable, the commanding officer exercised poor judgement, and the executive officer exercised poor leadership of the ship's training program.
Some Navy officials have cited strains from frequent extended deployments, delayed maintenance and almost a decade of budget constraints and reductions in resources devoted to training as factors.
He added: "I have directed an operational pause be taken in all of our fleets around the world".
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