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  #11  
Old 01-20-2013
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Re: US Navy ship strikes reef because of incorrect charts

The upside is that most minesweepers are made with non-ferrous hulls -- so the damage to the reef probably is somewhat less than it would have been if it had been struck by a steel hulled vessel.

There are going to be several folks who take hits along with the skipper -- the XO, the quartermaster, the watch officer...
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Old 01-20-2013
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Re: US Navy ship strikes reef because of incorrect charts

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Originally Posted by chef2sail View Post
Wheres Jon?,,,he will probably let us know he was staring at his chartplotter, not look at a chart
Might not be all that far-fetched, actually... Anytime a boat is driven straight onto a reef that is AWASH, in the open ocean, in a region where the tidal range is not particularly extreme, it's a pretty safe bet that the watch or lookout might have been looking somewhere other than dead ahead, at the time...

It will be interesting to learn precisely how far "off" their charts had misplaced their reef... As smurphy mentions, many features in the more isolated regions of the Pacific are misplaced, often by as much as a mile or more...

However, Tubbataha Reef is hardly a "remote" atoll, being one of the most popular dive sites in the Phillipines, and frequented by numerous liveaboard charter dive boats, etc... I suspect they all have a pretty good idea where it is, you'd think the US Navy operating in that part of the world would have access to cartography at least as good as the locals are using...

I'm guessing that this supposed "inaccuracy" in the charts is being used, for the time being, as a temporary cover for the Navy's screw up... It would not surprise me at all if it turns out that the reef is, indeed, misplaced to some degree... However, I will be very surprised if that error turns out to nearly as significant as the berth that any prudent skipper, transiting those waters at night, should have been giving to an unlit reef, to begin with...


Last edited by JonEisberg; 01-20-2013 at 08:44 AM.
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Old 01-20-2013
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US Navy ship strikes reef because of incorrect charts

I was told a long time ago by fellow sailors after I had my first grounding, "You are not a real sailor until you had a grounding."

It happens to the best of us, no?
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Old 01-20-2013
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Re: US Navy ship strikes reef because of incorrect charts

from what I read, she is really getting battered, the waves have turned her sideways onto the reef. Seeing as she is mostly constructed of wood with an external coat of glass-reinforced plastic, I am going to say this reef is going to claim a new wreck soon.

According to the news... the chart "misplaced" the reef by 8 miles
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Old 01-20-2013
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Re: US Navy ship strikes reef because of incorrect charts

Wow. That's quite a sad picture. Those are my tax dollars there! Obviously, there was a problem with lookout regardless of what charts they were using. Looks as if there would have been sound as well as the white from the break. The water looks like it's really moving. Even on a dark night, if someone was paying attention, should have been able to detect this.

Completely understandable if it was foggy and charts were wrong. It looks like it gets shallow quickly so watching depth may not have helped much other than providing a second or so to say "AW S$^T" before the crunch. These ships must have forward scanning sonar? If so, then there's no excuse.
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Re: US Navy ship strikes reef because of incorrect charts

I would assume they have foward sonar as they are designed to find and destroy both floating and submerged mines
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Re: US Navy ship strikes reef because of incorrect charts

It'll take a miracle to get her off there now.


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Re: US Navy ship strikes reef because of incorrect charts

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Originally Posted by smurphny View Post
It'll take a miracle to get her off there now.


I doubt they will get her off in one piece. Even if they do... she's done.
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Re: US Navy ship strikes reef because of incorrect charts

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Originally Posted by mad_machine View Post

According to the news... the chart "misplaced" the reef by 8 miles
An error in the cartography that great seems very difficult to imagine... The report I saw said the the GUARDIAN's navigator misplaced the reef by that amount, someone might be leaving a bit of wiggle room there...

Considering the US took possession of the Phillipines in 1898 after our defeat of the Spanish navy at the Battle of Manila Bay, and Admiral Nimitz's fleet managed to sink an impressive number of Japanese ships in the Sulu Sea during the Second World War, it's a bit perplexing that it has supposedly taken the US Navy until now, to figure out where Tubbataha Reef is, plus or minus 8 NM...
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Re: US Navy ship strikes reef because of incorrect charts

As Jon noted earlier, this is not a remote location. Looks like just a screw up attributable to lack of "attention to detail," as the Navy would put it.
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