Norfolk-based admiral to lead Navy review on safety following collisions

A fleet-wide pause to review safety protocols and a investigation into how the navy trains its forces to operate in the Pacific.

NORFOLK, Va. (WVEC) -- A fleet-wide pause to review safety protocols and an investigation into how the Navy trains its forces to operate in the Pacific.

That's the Navy's response to the destroyer USS John S McCain colliding with an oil tanker near Singapore.

The Chief of Naval Operation Admiral John Richardson has ordered a pause in operations for operations around the world in the wake of the second major ship collision since June.

First it was the USS Fitzgerald, now, it's the McCain.

The commander of Norfolk-based U.S. Fleet Forces Command Admiral Phil Davidson will lead a more in-depth review of the recent problems.

Davidson will be responsible for examining the training and certification process that forward-deployed forces in Japan undergo, including the surface warfare force's tactical and navigational proficiency, including looking at operational tempo, personnel trends, material, maintenance and equipment.

In his direction to the fleet, Davidson spoke about the job ahead in a Fleet Forces video posted on YouTube and Facebook.

"Your commitment to our operations is well understood and most appreciated," he said. "The nation knows what you're capable of each and every day and you have proved it routinely. But we can always get better. Plan this operational pause and execute it smartly."

Davidson also talked about a number of core principles. They include sound maintenance practices, standard operating procedures, and commitment to watch-standing principles. He says they're key to crew safety and mission success.

The remains of some of the 10 missing sailors have been found, but the navy says the search continues.

Virginia senator Mark Warner weighed in today, tweeting: "I join (the) Navy in praying for those still missing."

© 2017 WVEC-TV


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