Submarines: December 25, 2003


An American nuclear sub (the USS Hartford) that grounded itself while training off the Spanish coast two months ago, apparently suffered worse damage that originally thought. The sub has just recently been dry docked and examined in detail. It was known that the bottom half of the rudder was torn off, but  the gouges in the hull were deeper than first thought. Initially, it was thought that the damage was less serious. Although the sub was able to steam back to dry dock facilities at Groton, Connecticut, it had to do so at half speed, taking a month for a trip that normally is made in two weeks. The cause of the accident was sloppiness by the six sailors in the navigation team. Too much time was allowed to elapse between position updates and the sub went aground while navigating shallow coastal waters. All six sailors in the "navigation party" were punished for dereliction of duty. The captain of the sub, and his boss (the commander of Submarine Squadron 22, based in Spain), were both relieved of duty. The implication here is that the training and discipline of the navigation party were not up to standard, and the ship's captain and the squadron commander are responsible for training and discipline. The damage to the Hartford may require expensive repairs to the hull and keep the sub out of service for up to a year.




Help Keep Us From Drying Up

We need your help! Our subscription base has slowly been dwindling.

Each month we count on your contributions. You can support us in the following ways:

  1. Make sure you spread the word about us. Two ways to do that are to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.
  2. Subscribe to our daily newsletter. We’ll send the news to your email box, and you don’t have to come to the site unless you want to read columns or see photos.
  3. You can contribute to the health of StrategyPage.
Subscribe   Contribute   Close