USS John S. McCain Leaves Singapore for Repairs in Japan

October 5, 2017 10:46 AM
Guided missile destroyer USS John S. McCain (DDG-56) is towed away from the pier at Changi Naval Base, Oct. 5, to meet heavy lift transport vessel MV Treasure on Oct. 5, 2017. US Navy Photo

After more than a month pier side in Singapore, the guided-missile destroyer USS John S. McCain (DDG-56) has left to be transported to Yokosuka, Japan for repairs, the Navy announced on Thursday.

McCain will be transported by the heavy-lift transport M/V Treasure from the Changi Naval Base to Japan.

“Over the next few days, John S. McCain will be towed to deep water, where the heavy lift vessel will lower itself, secure the ship on a platform and then raise back up out of the water,” read a statement from the service.
“After the process of loading the ship is complete, Treasure will transport John S. McCain to Fleet Activities Yokosuka, where the forward-deployed ship will be repaired.”

The service announced on Wednesday that the destroyer would be fixed at Yokosuka rather than the U.S.

The repairs will cost about $223 million and take about a year, according to a Navy cost estimate obtained by USNI News.

The warship arrived at the Singapore naval base on Aug. 21 after suffering a collision with merchant oil tanker transiting the Strait of Malacca that resulted in the death of 10 sailors.

McCain was able to make it to Changi under its own power and the service conducted emergency repairs to fix the hole punched in the port quarter of the ship by the bulbous bow of the tanker.

“In the weeks prior to departure from Singapore, crew members, technicians and divers prepared the ship for the journey by conducting damage assessments and placing key systems in layup maintenance,” read the statement.
“A patch was also installed over damaged sections of the hull to restore watertight integrity.”

Images released by the service show about a 25-foot wide temporary patch welded over the hull breach.

In addition to McCain, the Navy is also set to transport destroyer USS Fitzgerald (DDG-62) to Ingalls Shipbuilding in Pascagoula, Miss. for repairs following a separate collision with a merchant ship off the coast of Japan on June 17 that resulted in the death of 10 sailors.

Sam LaGrone

Sam LaGrone

Sam LaGrone is the editor of USNI News. He has covered legislation, acquisition and operations for the Sea Services since 2009 and spent time underway with the U.S. Navy, U.S. Marine Corps and the Canadian Navy.
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