Wicker Responds to Navy’s Final Comprehensive Review

Military Brass Explains USS Fitzgerald, USS John S. McCain Collisions

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Roger Wicker, R-Miss., Chairman of the Senate Seapower Subcommittee, today released the following statement after the Navy released its comprehensive review of recent mishaps at sea, including the USS Fitzgerald and USS John S. McCain collisions. Those two particular incidents caused the death of 17 American sailors.

“As the review tragically reveals, both the USS Fitzgerald and USS John S. McCain collisions were avoidable. It is clear from the report – and the briefing provided to the Senate Armed Services Committee earlier this week – that the size of the Navy was also a contributing factor. As I told the Senate on Tuesday, we are asking too few ships to do too many things. We are wearing out our sailors and their ships. I urge the Navy to implement the report’s recommendations quickly, and I stand ready to help.”

In August, the Navy announced that it intends to award Ingalls Shipbuilding in Pascagoula the contract to repair the USS Fitzgerald, an Arleigh Burke-class guided missile destroyer. The ship was severely damaged on June 17, 2017, when a container ship collided with the destroyer off the coast of Japan.