Porter damage assessment underway in UAE

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by Mike Gooding, 13News

WVEC.com

Posted on August 13, 2012 at 4:05 PM

Updated Tuesday, Aug 14 at 9:53 AM

NORFOLK -- A Norfolk-based destroyer damaged in a collision near the Strait of Hormuz over the weekend is pierside in Jebel Ali, UAE, where it's being assessed and repaired, the Navy's Fifth Fleet said Monday.

The collision between USS Porter and the Panamanian-flagged bulk oil tanker M/V Otowasan occurred early Sunday, causing a huge gash in the starboard side just in front of the ship's superstructure and above the waterline.  No one was hurt.

The Navy said the ship's crew is doing everything they can to recover from the collision and get the ship back to full operational capability. They are doing so with assistance and direction from the Fleet, Type and System Commanders.

The crew of USS Porter is being provided air-conditioned berthing accommodations as well as additional health assessment and religious ministry support.

Retired Navy Captain Joe Bouchard of Va. Beach served as commanding officer of the Spruance-class destroyer USS Oldendorf in the mid 1990s. He's made five transits through the Strait, which he says can be very crowded.

40 percent of the world's seaborne oil exports pass through the waterway.

Bouchard believes the damage is extensive enough for the ship to return to the U.S. for repairs. Porter was built in the Ingalls Shipyard in Pascagoula, Mississippi.

USS Porter is on a scheduled deployment to the U.S. 5th Fleet area of responsibility conducting maritime security operations and theater security cooperation efforts.

An investigation into the incident continues.

 

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