A US Navy destroyer was left with a gaping hole in its side after a collision with an oil tanker early Sunday just outside the busy Strait of Hormuz.
The collision left the USS Porter with a 10 foot by 10 foot hole in the starboard side. The navy said in a statement that no one was injured on either vessel, reports The Guardian.
The USS Porter’s collision with the Panamanian-flagged, Japanese owned bulk oil tanker M/V Otowasan occurred about 1am local time, and photographs released show workers standing around twisted metal and debris hanging off of the side of the navy destroyer.
While the collision is not “combat related,” the navy stated that the cause of the accident is still under investigation. There were no spills or leaks from either the USS Porter or the Otowasan, and the Navy warship will be heading to the nearest port for a damage assessment.
The New York Daily News notes that the Navy destroyer is on a deployment based in Bahrain, an island nation near Iran. The Strait of Hormuz is a crowded waterway. Tensions have risen over Iranian threats to shut down or mine the waterway where one-fifth of the world’s oil passes.
This is not the first collision involving a navy ship in the Strait of Hormuz, as the USS Hartford, a nuclear-powered submarine, collided with the USS New Orleans, a San Diego-based amphibious ship three years ago. The fuel tank of the USS New Orleans was ruptured, while 15 sailors on the Hartford suffered injuries.
The blunder caused $2.3 million in damage to the New Orleans and $102.6 million for the Hartford. The sub’s commanding officer was relieved of his duties and an adviser to the CO was reassigned. Several crew members were also punished.