Wednesday, May 27, 2020

Circuit breaker Day 51 pix: Self Study Topic Malacca Strait Collision Case Study

A number of interesting foreign warships drop by at Sembawang Wharves, in the north of Singapore, every year.

These pictures of the United States Navy destroyer, USS Ingersoll (DD-990), were taken in June 1992 from the flight deck of HMS Invincible.

The Ingersoll collided with an oil tanker, M/V Matsumi Maru No. 7, in Strait of Malacca at night while on route to Singapore. The Ingersoll's OOD apparently misread the tanker's running lights which were swamped by the deck lighting and flood lights which were switched on to deter pirates.

USS Ingersoll Collision Case Study
The destroyer survived the collision and returned to operational service. She was decommissioned in July 1998.

If you have time to spare, there's a useful case study on the Federation of American Scientists site on the incident. Please click here for your self study slides.

If you've been on a warship in the Strait of Malacca and Singapore, you'll realise that the bridge crew gives their all during the transit because of the high level of traffic in these sea lanes.

Even with ships observing the Traffic Separation Scheme while sailing in the SOMS, ships must watch out for vessels moving across the sea lanes as not everyone observes the rules of the road. And when Sumatras hit, these tropical thunderstorms can cut visibility pretty quickly with intense wind, rain and lightning.

Radar and optronics help with safe navigation. But nothing beats alert watchstanders, an on-the-ball OOW who thinks several steps ahead and a responsive helm.

We have the highest regard for mariners who work in such an environment day after day. There's nothing routine about sailing in crowded waterways.

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