Investigators obtain data recorder in US warship collision

Japanese transport safety officials said they obtained the voyage data recorder, similar to an airplane's "black box", from the Philippine-flagged container ship, which is now docked in Yokohama.

A spokesman for the Navy's Seventh Fleet in Yokosuka, Japan, the Fitzgerald's home port, said he couldn't comment because of the ongoing investigations, Reuters reported.

According to Reuters, Benson took command of the Fitzgerald on May 13. The collision causes heavy damage to the U.S. ship, as it sustained big damage on one side with a big hole under the waterline, while on the other hand, the container didn't suffer a bit, which is because of its enormous size.

Reports also say the container ship, three times larger than the Fitzgerald, continued steaming toward Tokyo for half an hour before turning around, suggesting the ship was on auto-pilot. An expert estimated the damage to the ship at more than $100 million, but no price can be put on the loss of seven sailors who were in their bunks when the accident occurred. As the point of penetration was bellow the waterline, seven sailors fought to overcome an inevitable flooding. "That's going to have to be found out during the investigation".

The official said it may never be known if the order to close the watertight hatch to the berthing area came while the two men were still alive. Manned by a Filipino crew, it was far less damaged than the Fitzgerald. Damage to the container ship is concentrated on its bow area, including a sharp horizontal cut across it, scratches and dents on the port side fence and hull.

This picture shows the guided missile destroyer USS Fitzgerald off the Shimoda coast after it collided with a Philippine-flagged container ship on June 17, 2017. The container ship neither had its running lights or transponder on. Coast Guard officials have interviewed crewmembers from both Fitzgerald and the merchant ship ACX Crystal.

AIS was developed in the late 1990s as a radio-based transponder system, initially meant to be used as part of a collision avoidance system for ships operating out of range of land-based shipping controllers.

"It looks very much like the computer was driving", he said. The captain simply said there was "confusion" on the bridge. The cabin was on the starboard side of the ship that was crushed and as a result Benson was hurt and airlifted to shore by a Japanese Coast Guard helicopter. "I will not speculate on how long these investigations will last".

This post was syndicated from Vanguard News. "That ship can really accelerate and maneuver". Given the many questions raised by the collision it is not surprising that there are numerous conspiracy theories. He said the ship could have taken on more water and potentially sunk, but the crew worked well to keep the water from spreading. "If you didn't wake the captain when you were supposed to, you were toast".

Those who died hailed from all parts of America. The bodies have arrived in the United States and the Navy is conducting autopsies, making funerals hard to plan, said Aly Hernandez-Singer, a cousin of Noe Hernandez, 26, from Weslaco, Texas.

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