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Mon Feb 4, 2013, 08:21 AM

Stranded US ship threatens Philippine reef



Stranded US ship threatens Philippine reef

Published on Jan 29, 2013

Tubbataha Reef off the southern Philippines is home to some of the richest marine life on the planet. It's much deserving of its world heritage site status.

But it's now under serious threat since a US Navy minesweeper ran aground on a coral wall on January 17th.

Al Jazeera's Jamela Alindogan reports from Palawan.

Via http://space4peace.blogspot.com/2013/01/obamas-pivot-onto-pacific-coral-reef.html

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Arrow 8 replies Author Time Post
Reply Stranded US ship threatens Philippine reef (Original post)
bananas Feb 2013 OP
BREMPRO Feb 2013 #1
hobbit709 Feb 2013 #2
Victor_c3 Feb 2013 #3
jonthebru Feb 2013 #4
KansDem Feb 2013 #8
happyslug Feb 2013 #5
AtheistCrusader Feb 2013 #6
Dustlawyer Feb 2013 #7

Response to bananas (Original post)

Mon Feb 4, 2013, 09:18 AM

1. like to know details of how this happened- what has been uncovered in the investigation?

i had read that the captain of the ship was warned not to sail through this protected area but just ignored the warning and told them to take it up with the embassy. If this is the case, he should be demoted or resign his post for his dismissal and arrogance, and for severely damaging this fragile ecosystem, His action and attitude makes us look arrogant to the philippines and the rest of the world.. What where they doing there?? was this a sightseeing trip?? Palawan Island coral reefs are a world treasure that need protection...not destruction by brute military ignorance and arrogance!!.

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Response to bananas (Original post)

Mon Feb 4, 2013, 09:55 AM

2. how did it run aground.

Isn't our Navy equipped with GPS, inertial navigation systems, sonar, radar, and accurate charts? Who was asleep on the job.

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Response to bananas (Original post)

Mon Feb 4, 2013, 10:27 AM

3. No doubt this occurred because women and openly gay members of the Navy were allowed to serve

on ships like this

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Response to bananas (Original post)

Mon Feb 4, 2013, 11:54 AM

4. This story is a sad one.

Its a sad story, not funny at all. The ship was built in the 80's completely of wood as a minesweeper. And will now be dismantled literally with chainsaws and disposed of. Chances are the bridge was relying on modern GPS charts rather than having eyes watching closely as it went by the reef.

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Response to jonthebru (Reply #4)

Mon Feb 4, 2013, 02:07 PM

8. Just curious...

The ship was built in the 80's completely of wood as a minesweeper.

Built of wood so it wouldn't attract magnetic mines?

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Response to bananas (Original post)

Mon Feb 4, 2013, 12:07 PM

5. Who told the Captain of this ship to go to this area?



http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/USS_Guardian_(MCM-5)


Managers of the Tubbataha Reefs Natural Park have identified at least three legal violations committed by the Navy vessel, according to Grace Barber, an administrator with the park’s management office. The vessel’s operators did not obtain permission to enter the park, did not pay the fee for entry and obstructed the work of park rangers, said Ms. Barber.

“The rangers have a protocol,” she said. “They are required to board and inspect every boat that enters the park. When the rangers asked the U.S. warship for permission to board, they were told to call the U.S. Embassy.”

The United States could be fined $300 per square meter of damage done to the reef. A full damage assessment will not be possible until the vessel is removed, said Ms. Barber, who added that park officials had never encountered a similar situation.

“This is the first time a Unites States military ship has entered the park,” she said.


http://www.nytimes.com/2013/02/01/world/asia/us-navy-to-scrap-vessel-stuck-on-philippine-reef.html?_r=0

On 17 January 2013 following a port call and fuel stop in Subic, Guardian proceeded across the Sulu Sea and entered the Tubbataha Reefs Natural Park. After appearing on Park radar, at approximately 0400 hours local time Guardian was radioed a warning by park officials that the vessel had entered a restricted area. Park officials claim their lawful warning was met with disregard by Guardian, which radioed back to "bring complaint to the U.S. Embassy." Guardian ran aground on Tubbataha Reef shortly thereafter about 130 kilometres (70 nmi) south east of Palawan in the Philippines. At the time of the accident the ship was travelling from Subic Bay in the Philippines to another port. The extent of any damage to the reef was unknown, but there was no evidence that there was a fuel oil leak. Philippines officials later estimated the damage to the reef at 1,000 square meters. The U.S. Navy evacuated all 79 crew members from the minesweeper to the USNS Bowditch and MV C Champion on 18 January. On 19 January, an assessment team was deployed would plan and execute the vessel's extraction. On 20 January 2013, Navy Times reported the ship is taking on water in multiple places and is experiencing a slight list to port.

Guardian now rests about 20 to 30 meters from the edge of the reef. Originally, only its bow was on the reef, but waves have now pushed the entire ship onto it. The guided missile destroyer USS Mustin, the oceanographic survey ship USNS Bowditch and the rescue and salvage ship USNS Salvor arrived in the area to help in the intended extraction, as well as tugboats and Philippine navy and coast guard vessels. It was intended the Guardian would be removed from the area by crane ships from Singapore to then be placed on a barge or other ship since the ship is too damaged to be towed due to multiple hull penetrations. During the time that the cranes made their journey from Singapore to the Philippines, preparations were made for the lift. 15,000 gallons of diesel fuel was extracted from the tanks in the Guardian to other ships that were on station and refilled with seawater to keep the vessel stable. Dry food stores and the personal effects of the Guardian's crew were removed as well. Salvage experts began to reinforce the wood-and-fiberglass hull of the minesweeper with Kevlar lines to mitigate stresses from waves hitting the vessel.

However, on 29 January, 2013 the United States Navy announced that the ship will be cut into three pieces on the reef prior to removal, resulting in the total loss of the ship to the Navy. USS Guardian will be decommissioned and struck from the Naval Vessel Register.


http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/USS_Guardian_(MCM-5)

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Response to bananas (Original post)

Mon Feb 4, 2013, 01:25 PM

6. Wow, I had no idea it was still stuck.

I figured they would have worked it loose and refloated it by now.

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Response to bananas (Original post)

Mon Feb 4, 2013, 01:55 PM

7. If its any consolation, that Captains career is toast!

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