BANGKOK – The collision between the US Navy destroyer USS John S. McCain and an oil tanker near Singapore on Aug. 21, which caused the death of 10 US sailors and injured five, was caused by the warship’s “sudden turn,” according to the final report of an investigation by Singapore government’s presented on Thursday.
“These findings should not be read as apportioning blame or liability to any particular organization or individual,” said the document by the Transport Safety Investigation Bureau of Singapore’s Transport Ministry.
“The collision between JSM (USS John S McCain) and AM (Alnic MC) as they were transiting through the Singapore Strait happened because of a sudden turn to Port by JSM, which caused it to head into the path of AM,” the report added.
Moreover, “when AM’s Bridge team saw JSM turning, it presumed that JSM would be able to safely pass ahead,” according to the document.
The collision, which occurred within three minutes of JSM turning, did not cause any oil spills, although the tanker was carrying about 12,000 tons of fuel from Taiwan to Singapore.
The bodies of the US sailors were recovered from the flooded interior of the US warship.