Monday, June 19, 2017

Destroyer USS Fitzgerald and Container Ship MV ACX Crystal collision

Destroyer USS Fitzgerald and Container Ship MV ACX Crystal collision --- ===

Although the cause of the collision is not yet known, local broadcaster NHK claimed that ACX Crystal made a U-turn 25 minutes towards the destroyer for no apparent reason before the collision (based on automatic identification system (AIS) data). The ship later continued to Tokyo Bay. Hit and run attack: reports say Crystal did not send any report of collision and left the area rather than standing by to render assistance. [Japan Coast Guard said it received an emergency call from a Philippine-registered container ship ACX Crystal around 2:20 a.m.  it had collided with the USS Fitzgerald southwest of Yokusuka, Japan.] Hot Air: I suppose we can’t completely rule out an intentional ramming by the cargo ship, but it sounds unlikely in the extreme and I really don’t even want to think about that.

July 21, 2017 Initial investigation blames Navy for USS Fitzgerald collision -  the collision between the USS Fitzgerald and a Philippine cargo ship off ... official said the crash "will wind up being our (the US Navy's) fault.".   initial investigation found that the Fitzgerald crew failed to understand and acknowledge the cargo ship was approaching and failed to take any action necessary to avoid the collision. It's also not clear if the crew ever called the commanding officer to come to the bridge.

Alternative theory - Officials have ruled out deliberate crash. There are rumours that the Phillipines flagged, Japanese run container ship deliberately rammed the unsuspecting destroyer in a near head-on collision. The only conceivable reason for the ship doing a sharp U-turn after passing the destroyer, then instead of safely passing made a sudden turn in to hit the starboard side. It only returned to its oritginal heading after its mission was complete. If the destroyer had assumed that the tanker was going to safely pass alongside, there would be no reason for alarm except in the 1 or 2 minutes it would take to suddenly veer into its path and there would be no time to steer away, and even gunfire would not have stopped the attack in time.

Commenters:  Sanity Bear Ray1968 Jun 18, 2017 The ramming of the USS Fitzgerald appears to have been deliberate.  It is very possible that this incident is another Ramadan celebration. Just a heads up folks. Ramming trucks into crowds just became ramming cargo ships into destroyers. peddling-fiction Absolutely think it was deliberate. Payback for rammed Russian spyship?

The manuever is similar to collisions / attacks on buses in which the attacking vehicle crosses the centerline, and then hits vulnerable side of the bus to kill or injure riders on the side of the bus.

Seattle Ride The Ducks Accidentally Head On Rips Open Tour Bus Side Killing 4 Sep 25, 2015 - So far, intentional crash on the part of the Duck driver has apparently been ruled out because nobody has even mentioned the possibility of a . NTSB finds Ride the Ducks crash in Seattle caused by broken axle ... but if the driver had deliberately steered the bus, that would also cause the axle to break


Marine traffic records suggest the ACX Crystal made a sudden U-turn roughly 25 minutes before the collision with the USS Fitzgerald. It is not clear why it changed course. Marine traffic records suggest it was travelling at 14.6 knots (27km/h) at the time of the collision.

Map showing location of USS Fitzgerald crash - 17 June 2017
Route of ACX Crystal ship before collision with USS Fitzgerald - 16 June 2017Image copyrightMARINETRAFFIC.COM
Image captionThe ACX Crystal appeared to make a U-turn before the collision, before rapidly adjusting course and setting off to Tokyo

Heavy:  ACX Crystal: 5 Fast Facts You Need to Know -
ACX Crystal is the ship that collided with USS Fitzgerald. ... 

Some Marine Trackers Say the ACX Crystal Veered Off Course & the Crew Is Being ...

GM2 Elliott says:  CO did not see anything…. he was asleep in his cabin there was most likely a junior officer on watch in charge of the bridge. 3rd they don’t always run radar which is about all I can say on that. and lastly they were in a highly trafficked area they could either have been a) been tracking a perceived threat and assumed that the ACX was functioning as it should have been and passed off that ship as a near miss while they continued tracking a threat as in the Chinese cruiser not far away from them. b) hyper focused on the tons of traffic nearby. 

USS Fitzgerald and MV ACX Crystal collision - Wikipedia

Early on 17 June 2017, the United States Navy destroyer USS Fitzgerald collided with MV ACX Crystal, a Philippine-flagged container ship, 56 nautical miles (104 kilometres; 64 miles) southwest of Yokosuka, Japan;[3][4] 10 nautical miles (19 km; 12 mi) southeast of the city of Shimoda.[2]
The accident killed seven Fitzgerald sailors, who were initially listed as missing,[3] but who were later recovered from within the flooded berthing compartments of the ship.[5] At least three more of the crew of nearly 300 were injured, including the ship's commanding officer, Commander Bryce Benson.[4] The accident was the deadliest peacetime loss of life for United States military personnel since 12 Marines were killed in a helicopter collision off Oahu, Hawaii, on 14 January 2016.[6]



Course of MV ACX Crystal from 6/16/17 12:05 UTC to 6/17/17 3:00, showing presumptive point of collision with USS Fitzgerald at 16:30 UTC (1:30 AM Japan Time)
Detail of the movements of ACX Crystal
The collision damaged Fitzgerald'starboard (right) side, including a "large gash near the keel" in the hull below the waterline, according to the commander of the U.S. Seventh FleetVice Admiral Joseph Aucoin.[7]Sea water flooded two berthing areas (one above the other), a machinery area, and the radio room.[8] The collision also destroyed the captain's cabin, according to Adm. Aucoin.[8] Hours of damage control by Fitzgerald's crew kept the ship from sinking.[9]
The executive officer assumed command as the destroyer returned to port with the assistance of tugs, the destroyer USS Dewey, and the Japan Coast Guard.[10][11][12][13]
The Japan Coast Guard and Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force participated in the search-and-rescue operations, including evacuating CDR Benson by helicopter.[4][14] The other injured sailors were evacuated by US military helicopters.[4]
The weather was clear at the time, and US and Japanese inquiries will investigate the cause of the collision.[9]
The US Navy's 7th Fleet identified the deceased sailors as:
  1. Gunner's Mate Seaman Dakota Kyle Rigsby, 19, from Palmyra, Virginia
  2. Yeoman 3rd Class Shingo Alexander Douglass, 25, from San Diego, California
  3. Sonar Technician 3rd Class Ngoc T Truong Huynh, 25, from Oakville, Connecticut
  4. Gunner's Mate 2nd Class Noe Hernandez, 26, from Weslaco, Texas
  5. Fire Controlman 2nd Class Carlos Victor Ganzon Sibayan, 23, from Chula Vista, California
  6. Personnel Specialist 1st Class Xavier Alec Martin, 24, from Halethorpe, Maryland
  7. Fire Controlman 1st Class Gary Leo Rehm Jr., 37, from Elyria, Ohio [15]
The time of the collision is unclear. On Monday, 19 June (Japan Standard Time)—two days after the collision—the Japan Coast Guard and Nippon Yusen (NYK Line), ACX Crystal's operator, announced that after further investigation, it had been determined that the collision occurred at about 1:30 A.M. At this time, ACX Crystal made a sudden turn, according to Automatic Identification System (AIS) data. The US Navy initially maintained the event was at 2:20 A.M., when AIS data showed the cargo ship returning to the same area where it had turned earlier, and five minutes before the event was reported to the Japan Coast Guard by ACX Crystal at 2:25 A.M. On Monday, the US Navy said "all aspects of this incident" were under investigation and declined to comment on the discrepancy.[16][17] (As U.S. Navy ships do not transmit their location data openly the way commercial vessels do, the path of Fitzgerald leading up to the collision cannot be independently confirmed until announced by Navy officials.[18]) The next day, 20 June, a spokesman said the Navy was "not disputing" the Japanese authorities' timeline.[19]
As the impact was on starboard side of Fitzgeraldthe rules of the sea suggest Fitzgerald failed to give way as required, but there are possible compounding factors that may result in the investigation coming to a different conclusion, such as if the vessels were overtaking each other or other ships in the immediate vicinity created a special situation.[20][21]
On Friday 23 June, Navy officials announced that one possible explanation for the time lag between the collision and the report is that the freighter was on autopilot when the collision took place. Thus, the autopilot could have malfunctioned or its warning signals could have been missed. Given ACX Crystal's behaviour after the collision, independent analyst Steffan Watkins says it is likely there was no one on her bridge. Afterwards, the ship reversed course and headed back for the collision location before resuming its original course. Investigators also ruled out the possibility that the collision was deliberate, while still seeking to understand why Fitzgerald's sensor systems did not detect ACX Crystal in time to avoid the incident.[22]
NYK Line was unable to provide information on what happened between the time of the collision and the report.[17] The Japan Coast Guard is investigating whether the collision was reported promptly.[16]
Fitzgerald is believed to be repairable, but it will take months.[9]


Within a day of the collision, investigations were begun by the United States Navy, U.S. Coast Guard, Japan Coast Guard, Japan Transport Safety Board, and the Crystal’s insurers. The U.S. Navy is conducting an internal inquiry of its crew operations, led by Rear Adm. Brian Fort, a veteran warship commander.[5] The U.S. and Japanese coast guards are investigating the cause of the accident.[19]

Ships involved[edit]

USS Fitzgerald[edit]

USS Fitzgerald is a Flight I Arleigh Burke-class destroyer. Built at Bath Iron Works in Maine, the ship was commissioned into the US Navy on 14 October 1995. Since September 2004, Fitzgerald has operated from Yokosuka, Japan, as part of Destroyer Squadron 15, a unit of the United States Seventh Fleet.

MV ACX Crystal[edit]

MV ACX Crystal is a container ship owned by the Olympic Steamship Co SA, Panama. Built by STX Offshore & Shipbuilding at ChangwonSouth Korea, the ship entered service in August 2008. ACX Crystal has been employed for use by ACX, a subsidiary of NYK Line, on shipping routes between Japan, Vietnam and Thailand.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "USS

    Jump up
    Fitzgerald crash: Seven navy crew missing off Japan". BBC News. 17 June 2017. Retrieved 17 June 2017.
    ^ Jump up to:a b Mikhail Voytenko (17 June 2017), "USS Fitzgerald collision with boxship ACX CRYSTAL, Japan", Maritime Bulletin
    ^ Jump up to:a b c "Seven sailors missing in ship collision found dead". The Hill. 17 June 2017. Retrieved 17 June 2017.
    ^ Jump up to:a b c d e Lendon, Brad; Wakatsuki, Yoko; Sterling, Joe (17 June 2017). "Search is on for 7 missing US sailors, cause of ship collision off Japan". CNN.
    ^ Jump up to:a b Shane, Scott (23 June 2017). "Maritime Mystery: Why a U.S. Destroyer Failed to Dodge a Cargo Ship" (23 June 2017). New York Times. Retrieved 24 June 2017.
    Jump up^ "Search Called Off For 12 Missing Marines In Hawaii Helicopter Crash". WBUR-FM. Retrieved 21 January 2016.
    Jump up^ U.S. Navy identifies 7 sailors who died in destroyer collision, CBS News, 18 June 2017
    ^ Jump up to:a b Shane, Scott (18 June 2017). "Sleeping Sailors on U.S.S. Fitzgerald Awoke to a Calamity at Sea". The New York Times. Retrieved 21 June 2017.
    ^ Jump up to:a b c "U.S. destroyer almost foundered after collision, bodies found: Seventh Fleet". Reuters. 18 June 2017.
    Jump up^ Simpkins, Jon; Larter, David (16 June 2017). "7 U.S. sailors missing after USS Fitzgerald's catastrophic collision". Navy Times. Retrieved 17 June 2017.
    Jump up^ LaGrone, Sam (16 June 2017). "7 Sailors Missing, CO Injured After Destroyer USS Fitzgerald Collided with Philippine Merchant Ship". USNI News. Retrieved 17 June 2017.
    Jump up^ "コンテナ船と米海軍イージス駆逐艦が衝突 静岡 石廊崎沖" [Container ship and US Navy Aegis destroyer collide off Cape Iro, Shizuoka Prefecture]. NHK (in Japanese). 17 June 2017. Retrieved 17 June 2017.
    Jump up^ "U.S. Destroyer Is Damaged in a Collision Near Japan, and Seven Sailors Are Reported Missing". The New York Times. The Associated Press. 16 June 2017. Retrieved 17 June 2017.
    Jump up^ Mateo, Janvic (18 June 2017). "US warship collision: 7 Navy sailors missing". Philstar.
    Jump up^ "Navy identifies USS Fitzgerald sailors found dead after crash". Fox News.
    ^ Jump up to:a b Makiko Inoue (19 June 2017), "Japan Says Deadly Ship Collision Happened Earlier Than Reported", The New York Times
    ^ Jump up to:a b Julia Jacobo (19 June 2017), What we know about Navy destroyer's deadly collision with a container ship in Japan, ABC News
    Jump up^ Fifield, Anna (19 June, 2017).Investigators question how a Navy destroyer and a container ship collided'. Washington Post.
    ^ Jump up to:a b Rich, Motoko (19 June 2017). "As Sailors’ Bodies Are Flown to U.S., Fitzgerald Inquiries Intensify". The New York Times. Retrieved 20 June 2017.
    Jump up^ J.F. Kelly Jr. (22 June 2017). "USS Fitzgerald: no sailor should die because of preventable human error". San Diego Union-Tribune. Retrieved 25 June 2017.
    Jump up^ Stashwick, Steven (20 June 2017). "The Crash of the USS Fitzgerald: What Happened and What Comes Next?". The Diplomat. Retrieved 25 June 2017.
    Jump up^ Shane, Scott (23 June 2017). "Maritime Mystery: Why a U.S. Destroyer Failed to Dodge a Cargo Ship". The New York Times. Retrieved 25 June 2017

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]

- Gunner’s Mate Seaman Dakota Kyle Rigsby, 19, from Palmyra, Virginia

- Yeoman 3rd Class Shingo Alexander Douglass, 25, from San Diego, California

- Sonar Technician 3rd Class Ngoc T Truong Huynh, 25, from Oakville, Connecticut

- Gunner’s Mate 2nd Class Noe Hernandez, 26, from Weslaco, Texas

- Fire Controlman 2nd Class Carlos Victor Ganzon Sibayan, 23, from Chula Vista, California

- Personnel Specialist 1st Class Xavier Alec Martin, 24, from Halethorpe, Maryland

- Fire Controlman 1st Class Gary Leo Rehm Jr., 37, from Elyria, Ohio

MV ACX Crystal

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Name:ACX Crystal
  • Olympic Steamship Co SA, Panama
  • Sinbanali Shipping Inc, Philippines (disponent owner)
Port of registry:Philippines Manila, Philippines
Builder:STX Offshore & ShipbuildingChangwon, South Korea
Yard number:1240
Launched:20 June 2008
In service:August 2008
General characteristics
Class and type:Container ship
Length:222.6 metres (730 ft) loa
Beam:31.1 metres (102 ft)
Installed power:28,880 kW (39,265 bhp)
Speed:25.3 knots (46.9 km/h; 29.1 mph)
Capacity:2,858 teu containers
ACX Crystal ( IMO number9360611MSSI: 548789000; callsign: DYUG)[2] is a container ship, built in South Korea in 2008. In June 2017 the ship was damaged in a collision with USS Fitzgerald south of Yokosuka, Japan.


ACX Crystal is a 730-foot (220 m) container ship of 29,060 gross tons, 39,565 tonnes deadweightand a container capacity of 2,858 teu.[3] The ship is 222.6 metres (730 ft) in length overall and 31.1 metres (102 ft) wide. ACX Crystal was built in 2008 by STX Offshore & Shipbuilding at their Jinhae shipyard in Changwon, South Korea.[3] The ship's main engine, made by STX to a MAN B&W design, is an 8-cylinder diesel of 28,880 kW (39,265 bhp) mcr, giving a maximum speed of 25.3 knots (46.9 km/h; 29.1 mph) and a service speed of 23.0 knots (42.6 km/h; 26.5 mph).[3]
The ship is technically classed with the Japanese NK (Nippon Kaiji Kyokai) ship classification society, and insured with the Japanese Shipowners P&I Association.[4]

Ownership and deployment[edit]

ACX Crystal has been owned by Olympic Steamship Co SA, Panama (a subsidiary of Japanese shipowner Sunford Shipping Ltd) and managed by Sea Quest Ship Management Inc of Bacoor, Philippines since 2008.[4][3] The ship has been bareboat-chartered to Sinbanali Shipping Inc of Manila since 2014,[3] but is reported by NYK Line on June 17 as being actually owned by Dainichi-Invest Corporation, a Japanese ship investment firm.[5] ACX Crystal is a mid-size container ship employed by ACX ('Asia Container Express'), the intra-Asia container shipping trade subsidiary of NYK Line, the global shipping and freight logistics division of the Japanese conglomerate Mitsubishi.
In June 2017, ACX Crystal was employed by NYK on its 'PX1' (Phoenix 1) intra-Asia trade line linking Japan, Vietnam and Thailand ports. As is common in the container shipping industry, the ship's cargo capacity is shared by NYK with other lines, such as Mitsui O.S.K. LinesK Line and other lines.

2017 collision[edit]

At 02.30 local time on 17 June 2017 (17.30 UTC 16 June), ACX Crystal, carrying 1,080 containers from Nagoya to Tokyo, collided with USS Fitzgeraldnear Shizuoka, Japan, about 56 nautical miles (104 kilometres; 64 miles) south of the Yokosuka Japanese and US naval base at the entrance of Tokyo Bay.[6][7] The merchant ship's bow and the destroyer's starboard side were damaged. Fitzgerald's commanding officer and two sailors were injured and evacuated by helicopter, and seven Navy sailors were found dead in the damaged, flooded starboard compartments.[8]
NYK stated that none of the 20 crew members aboard the container ship, all Filipino, were injured, and that the ship was not leaking oil. They also confirmed their full co-operation with the Japan Coast Guard's investigation of the incident, which began the same day.[7][1] Although the cause of the collision is not yet known, local broadcaster NHK claimed that ACX Crystal made a U-turn 25 minutes before the collision (based on automatic identification system (AIS) data). The ship later continued to Tokyo Bay.[7][9]


  1. ^ Jump up to:a b Johnson, Jesse (17 June 2017). "Seven sailors missing, three injured after U.S. Navy destroyer and cargo vessel collide off Kanagawa". The Japan Times. Retrieved 17 June 2017.
  2. Jump up^ "ACX CRYSTAL - Container Ship". 2017.
  3. ^ Jump up to:a b c d e "ACX Crystal (9360611)". Sea-web. Retrieved 2017-06-17. (Subscription required (help)).
  4. ^ Jump up to:a b "ACX Crystal (9360611)". Equasis. French Ministry for Transport. Retrieved 2017-06-17. (Registration required (help)).
  5. Jump up^ Hand, Marcus (17 June 2017). "Updated: Seven missing from US warship after collision with NYK containership". Seatrade Maritime News. Retrieved 17 June 2017.
  6. Jump up^ Tyler Hlavac (June 16, 2017), "Seven sailors missing, commander injured after USS Fitzgerald collides with merchant ship", Stars and Stripes
  7. ^ Jump up to:a b c McCurry, Justin; Hurst, Daniel (17 June 2017). "Seven missing after USS Fitzgerald collides with merchant ship off Japan". The Guardian. London. Retrieved 17 June 2017.
  8. Jump up^ Motoko Rich (June 16, 2017), "U.S. Destroyer Fitzgerald Is Damaged in Collision Off Japan", The New York Times
  9. Jump up^ "USS Fitzgerald crash: Seven navy crew missing off Japan". BBC News. 17 June 2017. Retrieved 17 June 2017.

External links[edit]

ACX Crystal (IMO 9360611) at Vessel Finder


July 21, 2017 Initial investigation blames Navy for USS Fitzgerald collision -  the collision between the USS Fitzgerald and a Philippine cargo ship off ... official said the crash "will wind up being our (the US Navy's) fault.".   initial investigation found that the Fitzgerald crew failed to understand and acknowledge the cargo ship was approaching and failed to take any action necessary to avoid the collision. It's also not clear if the crew ever called the commanding officer to come to the bridge.

July 21, 2017 Preliminary findings suggest Navy at fault in Fitzgerald collision, report ... Navy Times Early findings in the investigation into the June 17 fatal collision between the destroyerFitzgerald and a container ship suggest the Navy crew ... suggest the Navy crew committed multiple errors and failed to take action before the collision, CNN reported Friday. defense officials said the accident “will wind up being our (U.S. Navy’s) fault,” according to CNN. Another official said the crew did nothing until the last second and that “a slew of things went wrong.”  The officials also told CNN the Fitzgerald crew failed to acknowledge the cargo ship approaching, and failed to take preventive measures.

Navy at fault for USS Fitzgerald crash, initial probe finds: report | TheHill

Navy At Fault For USS Fitzgerald Crash | The Daily Caller A preliminary investigation into the collision of the USS Fitzgerald and a Philippine cargoship in June has revealed that the Navy is at fault.

Freighter Was On Autopilot When It Hit US Destroyer Highly Cited-Washington Free Beacon-Jun 23, 2017 under control of a computerized navigation system that was steering and guiding the container vessel, according to officials familiar with preliminary results of an ongoing Navy investigation. Investigators so far found no evidence the collision was deliberate. Nevertheless, an accident during computerized navigation raises the possibility the container ship's computer system could have been hacked and the ship deliberately steered into the USS Fitzerald, an Arleigh Burke-class guided missile destroyer. A more likely explanation is that collision was the result of an autopilot malfunction, or the autopilot's warning signals, used to notify the ship's operators, were missed.

Cargo Captain Says He Tried to Warn US Warship Before Fatal ... TIMEreport to Japanese ship owner Dainichi Investment Corp seen by Reuters, the captain of the Philippine cargo ship, Ronald Advincula, said their vessel had signaled the USS Fitzgerald ahead of the crash. But the Fitzgerald moved "suddenly" into the ACX's path despite the flashing lights. Advincula added that his vessel attempted to avoid the warship, only to collide with the Fitzgerald at 1:30 a.m... Exclusive: US warship stayed on deadly collision course despite ... Reuters-rst detailed account from one of those directly involved, the cargo ship's captain said the ACX Crystal had signaled with flashing lights after the Fitzgerald "suddenly" steamed on to a course to cross its path.  new information. Communications and radio were knocked out had to use satellite cellphones  cargo ship did not immediately realize it hit something until it turned around.  Savage compares to USS Cole blown up by a rubber boat. Even if it was deliberate ISIS attack like van attack on sidewalk, crew should have been able dodge collision

VRforAll1 day ago  The timeline was revised. Collision happened an hour earlier. Given that info the tracking data makes a lot more sense. AIS system was turned on the ACX Crystal which was following a predetermined path on autopilot. Bridgewatch was probably not paying attention or asleep. Collision happened at the sharp right turn. Notice autopilot course corrected after collision. Bridgewatch did not notice the collision until later when they finally turned around which is standard procedure after a collision. The Fitzgerald was probably on mission and was running silent. Bridge command was tracking the ACX and was on a parallel course to the cargo ship. The ACX turned about 10 degrees left after hitting a waypoint on it's predetermined route which now puts it in a path of collision. Either the Bridge command did not notice the change in heading of the ACX or they miscalculated outpacing the larger slower ship. Given the revised timeline. The tracking data on the cargo ship does not suggest an intentional action. Just a tragic accident. I commend the valiant efforts of the crew of the USS Fitzgerald. Their bravery and sacrifice saved the ship from sinking. I agree things need to change with our military command.

warzone We Don't Know Much About the Fitzgerald Collision and That Seems Odd
the prevailing conspiracy theory is that for some reason the Crystal, which features a bulbous bow that would be well suited to ramming a smaller ship, deliberately plowed into the side of the Fitzgerald. To follow this logic, one of the more likely bad actors in such a scenario would be North Korea, which does have a history of using its own cargo ships, front companies, and unscrupulous foreign firms to move illicit or restricted cargoes to and from the reclusive country. In addition, there has been steadily escalating rhetoricbetween officials in Washington and Pyongyang, as well as more active incidents, such a bizarre and still largely unexplained scuffle between agents from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and North Korean diplomats at New York City’s JFK International Airport on June 18, 2017. North Korea has not shied away from covert actions against its enemies, including the assassination of Kim Jong Nam, half-brother of the country’s premier Kim Jong Un, in Malaysia in February 2017.  as we’ve already said, there are no factual details that definitely support this scenario. It’s just as likely that the crew of the Crystal was engaged in some much more mundane criminality or that they were operating without some necessary paperwork, prompting them to try and flee before the magnitude of the situation became clearer. And it’s entirely possible it really just was a freak accident that will be blamed on some technological or mechanical failure or just old fashioned gross human error.

 MarineTraffic, an online ship tracking service similar to aircraft watching sites like FlightRadar24, showed the Crystal making what appeared to be an emergency turn at 1:30 AM on July 17, 2017, deviating widely from its established course. The website can also generate a graph of the container ship's speed, which in this case shows a sudden drop from 14 knots to zero, possibility indicating the time of collision. It then appeared to speed up to a similar speed shortly after. It's another important data point, even if we cannot independently verify the accuracy of the satellite tracking data. At 2:25 AM, the Philippine-flagged ship reports the accident and five minutes later suddenly makes a 180 degree turn and heads back to what is now know to be the collision site. Some speculated this might have been the result of an autopilot error or failure.

how does a Navy Destroyer and merchant vessel collide Martin Brodel  dwc014 hours ago
A seaman on the Fitzgerald said the ACX came in with all lights off and its transponder switched off.  Its surprise U-turn trajectory is too calculated to be accidental, especially when timed with a black, moonless night at ~0300 and a stealth approach.   First it made the Fitz stop to allow it to pass and then swung back to attack before the Fitz was underway again.

What? Are you saying a container ship attacked the destroyer and won?

Cry of the Prophet  D Johnson no, a cargo ship did not target and attack a US Arleigh Burke class destroyer which is capable of around 36 knots and can evade torpedoes.  This was an accident. The time of night, low vis conditions and a tired midwatch team spells the perfect recipe for complacency.  If the cargo ship in fact had zero running lights, f the cargo ship in fact had zero running lights, then that would change the dynamic but in all my years on the sea, I've never once seen a cargo ship without its running lights after taps.. you don't see that, not saying it's not possible, just extremely unlikely...

Matthew Serdynski2 Why is nobody acknowledging the possibility this was done on purpose? The Fitzgerald has been off the coast of Japan doing joint drills because of North Korea . They are saying its a Filipino ship that hit the Fitzgerald, but how likely is it that this could happen without intent. Matthew Serdynski so ur saying Phil sea tanker have intent to hit us navy?  u don't think to US have lot of military bases in ph?  wow..  in Mindanao they have a if force and in central ph they have navy base..  also the subic and Clark pampangga have us navy and us air force..  u have big military base in ph u think it was intentional?  wow..  u must be broke..

dwc  It is not yet known who owns or controls the ACX, or whose agents were in control of it at the time.  Obviously not the Phil gov't, that's not the suggestion.  One must look beyond a simple flag.

'There wasn't a lot of time' as water flooded U.S. destroyer below decks ... hours ago - Seven U.S. sailors went missing after a U.S. Navy destroyer collided with a ... to the Sagami Sea, a container ship, the Philippine-flagged ACX Crystal, was ... Marine traffic data showed the Crystal making a sudden U-turn ...

​ USS FITZGERALD collision with boxship ACX CRYSTAL, Japan ...

Update: USS FITZGERALD hull was breached above and below waterline, with water ingress in some compartments. The ship is under own power, though her propulsion is limited. Crew are pumping out water.
Container ship ACX CRYSTAL though Philippines-flagged, said to be operated by Japanese NYK. Her damages though substantial, aren’t too serious, let alone critical.
Container ship ACX CRYSTAL collided with destroyer USS FITZGERALD at around 0230 Tokyo time June 17 in vicinity 34 32N 139 05E, 10 nm southeast of Shimoda, Izu peninsula, Honshu island, Japan. Container ship was en route from Nagoya to Tokyo, while USS FITZGERALD understood to be sailing either to, or from, Yokosuka Naval Base. Container ship bow struck destroyer starboard in bridge area, destroying part of superstructure. Container ship suffered bow damages, reportedly bow stern was breached, but vessel remained seaworthy and resumed sailing towards Tokyo, at 1300 Tokyo time she was entering Tokyo Bay at some 12 knots speed.
Seven USS FITZGERALD crew reported missing, several were injured, at least three medevaced by helicopter.
As in most collision accidents, most probably in this accident too, both ships are responsible for the collision, to a more or less degree. Navies in most cases, are more to blame, if you ask me. Navy ships have a specially assigned sailor for each and every task, from watching to plotting maneuvers. Navy ships are always ready to reverse engines or change course. Merchant ships are resembling big passenger jets – take-off, straight flight, landing, with as few maneuvers as possible. Their manning is based mainly on monetary considerations, crews are severely limited. The bigger is the merchant ship, the more difficult and unpredictable is her maneuvering. Merchant marine needs as obstacles-free (including such obstacles, as Navies or fishing vessels, especially coastal boats) and wide lanes, as possible.
Photos Iori Sagisawa/Kyodo News, via Associated Press.
Pic of AIS track of ACX CRYSTAL .
USS FITZGERALD (DDG-62), Arleigh Burke-class destroyer of the US Navy, displacement 9000 tons, commissioned 1995, complement: 33 commissioned officers 38 chief petty officers 210 enlisted personnel.

Alan Weigel · United States Naval Academy
From AIS it looks like ACX Crystal was stand on vessel but did not maintain course and speed. That would put most of the liability on the container ship not the DD. Also news reports say Crystal did not send any report of collision and left the area rather than standing by to render assistance. If true both would add to liability.
Like · Reply · 8 · Jun 17, 2017 5:27pm

Darko Botica · Chief Officer at National Tanker Shipping Company of Saudi Arabia -Bahri)
Things are pretty clear. Destroyer was hit at her starboard side, and she was obliged to avoid collision. However, at court, never is one vessel 100% guilty, and both will share such guilty, in percentage. I would say, destroyer 70 guilt, other ship 30%.
Like · Reply · Jun 17, 2017 9:13pm

Darius Antonio
The other ship made a U-turn! How is that just 30% guilty?

In fact every vessel (not just Navy vessels) shall at all times proceed at a safe speed so that she can take proper and effective action to avoid collision and be stopped in a distance appropriate to the prevailing circumstances and conditions. Considering, amongs...See More
Like · Reply · 4 · Jun 18, 2017 7:28am · Edited

Darius Antonio
Why did the cargo ship made a U-turn? Saw a US Destroyer and decide they have to score?
Like · Reply · 23 hrs

Reinhard Schumann
Why believe the ais course? Perhaps this was caused by ais malfunction?

cargo ship hit the US Destroyer in practically an open sea and they did not hit anything in their destination all crowded with other vessels?

Sailors killed as USS Fitzgerald and container vessel collide

14 hours ago - Seven missing after US destroyer in collision with container ship ... Japanese media citedtracking data that suggested the ACX Crystal made a ...

The Navy isn't sure how a deadly destroyer collision happened – VICE ...

2 hours ago - On a calm and clear night just south of Tokyo Bay, the ACX Crystal carried ... While tracking data on the Marine Traffic website shows exactly ...

*Conspiracy theory

will friar FITZ SITTING STOPPED WAITING FOR ACE TO PASS AS REQUIRED BY RULES OF THE ROAD. ACE TURNED INTO FITZ AND RAMMED HER AT TOP SPEED  How does a merchant ship especially one of that size was allowed to get that close? will friar IT HAPPENED IN SHIPPING LANES AND OUR SHIPS ARE NOT ON "WAR ALERT" will friar13 hours ago

US Destroyer Nearly Sunk After Deadly Collision; Bodies Of Seven US ...
The bodies of seven U.S. sailors missing after the USS Fitzgerald  Sanity Bear Ray1968 Jun 18, 2017 The ramming of the USS Fitzgerald appears to have been deliberate.  It is very possible that this incident is another Ramadan celebration. Just a heads up folks. Ramming trucks into crowds just became ramming cargo ships into destroyers. peddling-fiction Absolutely think it was deliberate. Payback for rammed Russian spyship? 

The USS Fitzgerald Collided With a Container Ship in Japan—Here's ...
The USS Fitzgerald ran into the ACX Crystal off the coast of Japan, and ... That will likelytake months, but collisions like this can usually be traced to a few ... The Latest Flying Car ConceptSeems—Dare We Say It—Serious.

Collision At Sea – U.S.S. Fitzgerald Collides With Cargo Container ...
 days ago - Anyone on the deck of the Fitzgerald would have been thrown from her almost immediately. ... extent of damage on both the ACX Crystal and USS Fitzgerald; appears the Crystal hit ... Rammingdoesn't mean it was deliberate.

A few thoughts (and prayers) regarding the USS Fitzgerald - Hot Air ...
1 day ago - Up until this morning some of us who have been talking about it around here ... between USS Fitzgerald (DDG 62) and a merchant ship have been found. ... At the moment a new target (another ship)shows up on the surface search ... I suppose we can't completely rule out an intentional ramming by the ...

possible that either vessel could have undergone a massive steering failure at the worst possible time, but we’ll find that out when the investigation is complete. I suppose we can’t completely rule out an intentional ramming by the cargo ship, but it sounds unlikely in the extreme and I really don’t even want to think about that.

” Marine traffic records show the Crystal made a series of sharp turns about 25 minutes before the collision, which in crowded seas could cause a cascade of maneuvers by other vessels…..”.

“Those are very high-traffic-density areas near coastal waters,” said Bill Doherty, a ship safety investigator and auditor with a long career of service on naval warships. “When a big ship like that makes a drastic change in a high traffic area, that has to be explained.”

We need more accurate plan of the tracks of the vessels. The Crystals erratic course changes seem to make no sense unless they were intentional.

7 sailors missing from US Navy warship involved in collision, US ... days ago - The USS Fitzgerald was involved in a collision with a merchant vessel while ... side of the Navy ship, which appeared to be stationary in the water. .... notified the Officer Of the Deck so the collision could have been avoided.

Danko Kovačević  n maritime law ship coming from your right side (starboard) has the right of passage and you must let him pass/navigate to its stern. USS Fitzgerald was hit starboard and that means officer who was navigating made a huge mistake, not to mention how many radars/sensors/sonars/proximity alarms even old-fashioned lookouts Arleigh Burke-class destroyer has onboard...It is definitely a human error, cargo vessel had the right of passage and captain (even tho he was asleep, but the chain of command makes him responsible for the ship) and officers on duty will have to answer for deaths of those 7 sailors (RiP), and for the big destruction of the ship...

Movements of Container Ship ACX CRYSTAL involved in a Collision with USS Fitzgerald

PROOF the Ramming of USS Fitzgerald Was a Terrorist Attack Kris Zane Evidence is mounting that the so-called "collision" of the USS Fitzgerald with the cargo ship ACX Crystal was no accident, but a ...cargo ship actually rammed destroyer media saying destroyer at fault - car hitting on side is out of lane at fault . Only way to crash is if you want to crash. Marine says ship reversed course. Mother says transponder off

Rick Spilman In a crossing situation such as this, USS Fitzgerald did not have the right of way.  Pretty basic Rules of the Road.  The Japanese Coast Guard is now reporting that the collision took place an hour earlier than previously reported, which means that change in course by the ACX Crystal took place after the collision. In addition to not having the right of way, the USS Fitzgerald is significantly faster and more maneuverable than the container ship and should have been able to avoid the collision. Also having state of the art radar, the Fitzgerald should not have been aware of the container ship well in advance of the collision.

USS Fitzgerald collision with a merchant ship, 7 overboard missing, one injured Druge says captain may be at fault, none of comments blame container ship.  Mary Greeley Comments all blame the Navy ship, nobody suspects container ship at fault. 


A teenage U.S. Navy sailor kept diving to try to save his shipmates until their flooded sleeping berth began running out of air pockets, his mother says, while other sailors — believing they were under attack — hurried to man the guns. Their destroyer's collision with a much heavier container ship off Japan's coast Saturday left seven sailors dead. Mia Sykes of Raleigh, North Carolina, told The Associated Press on Sunday that her 19-year-old son, Brayden Harden, was knocked out of his bunk by the impact, and water immediately began filling the berth, after their destroyer, the USS Fitzgerald, collided with a Philippine-flagged container ship four times its size off the Japanese coast.

The ships collided about 2:20 a.m. Saturday, when the Navy said most of the 300 sailors on board would have been sleeping, and authorities have declined to speculate on a cause while the crash remains under investigation.

damage to the destroyer suggests that the container ship, the ACX Crystal, might have slammed into it at a high speed, raising questions about communication between the two vessels

Some ship trackers showed the container ship making a U-turn before the collision, a move that has raised questions about what happened. Both Aucoin and the Japanese coast guard, however, said it was too early to determine  possible professional negligence

From the AIS data:

2017-06-16 10:31 on course 91.90
17.0 knots reported
91.90 course reported
straight line to and picking up a little speed, 89.23 effective heading
2017-06-16 11:16 adjustment made 12 minutes before impact, heading adjusted slightly more northward to 78.44 effective heading (a 10.70 degree turn).
18.3 knots reported
87.20 course reported
straight line to impact

3 minutes? Before Impact
2017-06-16 11:25
18.5 Knots reported
70.5 course reported

2 minutes? After Impact
2017-06-16 11:30
17.3 Knots reported
88.20 course reported

Veered to
2017-06-16 11:38
13.1 knots
41.90 course

Looks like Auto-Pilot still on, ship automatically recovered course .. or just turning off

20 minutes after collision
2017-06-16 11:48
12.9 Knots
70.40 Course

Turns around
2017-06-16 12:06 .. 36 minutes after collision
7.6 Knots
305.90 course

Then looped back to (probably location of Fitzgerald)
2017-06-16 12:57 .. 1:29 after collision
3.3 Knots
13.00 course
David says: June 17, 2017 at 1:42 pm The should never have happened is beyo nd an understatement. It’s a humiliating assessment of our Navy readiness. Who needs high-tech naval ships to take out an american war ship, just sail in a few cargo ships and ram them. Stunning.    If the times given in the media are accurate to the minute, it does looks like the Crystal made a starboard turn right before the crash, which very well could have caused a collision course after the Fitz had passed clear ahead of the Crystal. But it sure must have been tight, and also still very strange the Fitz didn’t manage to get out of the way, anyway.

USS Fitzgerald Press Conference • 06/18/2017 • Fleet Activities Yokosuka

How Could The Navy Destroyer Collision Happen?
NPR · 3 hours ago

US Navy identifies deceased sailors found inside USS Fitzgerald

Fox News · 8 hours ago

Blog: More fishiness in the ramming of USS Fitzgerald

American Thinker · 40 mins ago

There is a lot we know -- and don't know -- about the USS Fitzgerald ...
1 day ago - Amid questions, here's what we're sure of in the USS Fitzgerald collision. ... (CNN)There is -- at this writing -- a lot we do not know about how the destroyer USS Fitzgerald came to collide with a heavily-laden freighter in the waters off Japan in the middle of the night.

US Navy destroyer Fitzgerald missing sailors found dead -
(CNN) Seven missing sailors from the USS Fitzgerald were found dead in flooded berthing compartments following the warship's collision with ...

The USS Fitzgerald Collided With a Container Ship in Japan—Here's ...
An American Navy destroyer collided with a merchant container ship off the coast of Japan early Saturday morning. The USS Fitzgerald which ...

US Navy identifies deceased sailors found inside USS Fitzgerald | Fox ... hours ago - The USS Fitzgerald collision is the third mishap since late January involving Navy warships near Japan. On Jan. 31, USS Antietam, a ...

Deadly Collision Crushed Captain's Cabin of USS Fitzgerald - WSJ hours ago - The USS Fitzgerald, a U.S. Navy destroyer, collided with a Japanese cargo ship in a highly trafficked shipping lane south of Tokyo.

Sleeping Sailors on U.S.S. Fitzgerald Awoke to a Calamity at Sea ... day ago - Damage to the U.S.S. Fitzgerald, which was berthed at its mother port in ... A collision of a United States Navy ship resulting in fatalities is ...

How Could The Navy Destroyer Collision Happen? : NPR hours ago - The Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Fitzgerald (DDG 62) returns to Fleet Activities (FLEACT) Yokosuka following a collision ...

U.S. Sailors Found Dead After USS Fitzgerald's Collision With ... - NPR days ago - Since the USS Fitzgerald collided with a container ship off Japan on Saturday, seven sailors had been missing. Sunday, the Navy released the ...