Home » News & Analysis » USS Fitzgerald Back in Yokosuka After Suffering Damage During Transit

USS Fitzgerald Back in Yokosuka After Suffering Damage During Transit

USS Fitzgerald (DDG-62) is loading onto the heavy lift transport vessel MV Transshelf. US Navy Photo

USS Fitzgerald (DDG-62), crippled in a deadly June collision with a merchant ship, suffered two hull punctures over the weekend by the special transport vessel hired to bring the guided-missile destroyer to the U.S. from Japan for repairs.

Fitzgerald returned to Fleet Activities (FLEACT) Yokosuka, Japan, to repair the pair of punctures caused by the steel support structure on semi-submersible heavy lift transport vessel Transshelf, owned by the Dutch marine conglomerate Royal Boskalis Westminster. The punctures occurred Friday, after Fitzgerald was towed out to deep water and was loading onto Transshelf, according to a statement released by the U.S. 7th Fleet.

Following the June 17 collision, which claimed the lives of seven sailors, Fitzgerald returned to Yokosuka where initial repairs were made in dry dock, and the ship was prepared to be transported back to the US for major repairs. Work included dewatering, defueling, hull and superstructure repairs, and placing key systems in layup maintenance, according to a statement released by U.S. 7th Fleet.

Since October, Fitzgerald had in the water, pierside, waiting for transport to the Huntington Ingalls Industries shipyard in Pascagoula, Miss. Huntington Ingalls Industries was awarded in August a $29.4 million contract to perform the initial planning work to repair the warship. The total cost to repair Fitzgerald, according to an early Navy estimate obtained by USNI News, is about $368.7 million.

The June collision punched a hole in Fitzgerald below the waterline, and damaged several high-end electronic systems, such as the integrated radio room on the ship and the starboard forward array of the ship’s A/N-SPY1D(v) air search radar, according to the Navy.

  • Monty Johnson

    looks like author needs spellchecker and factchecker

    • Mk-Ultra


  • asa1940

    “Since October, Fitzgerald had in the water, pierside, waiting for transport to the Huntington Ingalls Industries shipyard in Pascagoula, Miss.”

    ??? “had” = “had been berthed” ???

  • Ray Delaney

    Isn’t the total cost to repair quoted in this article about equal to the cost of two new-in-box vessels of this class? If so, why not strip the damaged vessel of everything useful to hold as spares at Japan, hulk the rest to sell for scrap, order a new one from BIW, and attapersons all round for the savings achieved?

    • DaSaint

      No. A new Burke is well over $1.7B.

      • Former 3364

        “The total cost to repair Fitzgerald, according to an early Navy estimate obtained by USNI News, is about $3687 million.”

        3687 million -> 3.687B.

        • bluewaternavy

          I’m thinking that was another typo

          • RedStatePatriot

            Yeah, I think he is trying to say 36.87 million.

          • Patrick Bechet

            No. $368.7m!

          • bluewaternavy

            Or 368.7 million. Damned decimals!

        • DaSaint

          That’s a typo. I believe a decimal is missing betwern the 8 and the 7.

      • Duane

        The newest Flight II Restarts are coming in at just under $2.0B each,.the Flight IIIs when finished will likely be higher, just due to inflation as well as more expensive/ore capable AEGIS sensors.

        • DaSaint

          Sounds about right. I didn’t check specifically. Was ballparking.

  • tzayad

    I can’t see why the Japs can’t fix her. They have the same class ship as far as the damages that were done. No, let’s spend even more money shipping her back to the states and pay twice as much to unionized businesses here that will then come back and ask for even more money.

    • Secundius

      That was the Original Plan! Apparently the US Navy changed their Collective Minds…

      • Robert Kail

        I doubt the USN had any say in the matter.

        • Secundius

          For some reason, I can’t SEE Donald Trump getting Involved as to Where the Ship Should be Repaired. When Osaka Japan has Extensive Shipyards and Repair Facilities On Hand. And the US Navy having Repair Contracts with Those Repair Facilities…

          • Robert Kail

            Your last two sentences directly support my observation. Unless specifically directed why would the USNavy not have the work done in Japan?

      • incredulous1

        Why would that change? Using a JAPANESE yard would reduce cost, be much quicker and spare the gawking and further embarrassment. Me thinks some more people need an early retirement due to the utterly feckless garbage taking place on their watch,…… Adm. R
        What happened to Adm. Harris? Is he ready to take over as CNO or VCNO yet?

        • Secundius

          The Pentagon and the Department of the Navy WORK’s in Mysterious Way, that “US” Mere Mortals are Incapable of Understanding. By EITHER “Rhyme or Reason”…

        • Gary Wilson

          I believe he is supposed to be the next US Ambassador to Australia.

        • Duane

          Not sure about reducing costs … if you’ve ever been in Japan, virtually everything seems to cost much more than here in the States. The Department of State grants a 25% cost of living adjustment to its employees who are stationed in Yokusuka, which is where the shipyard is.

          • Secundius

            But I would suspect the Cost would be that Same as or at the Very Least Comparable to one of Their Own (JSDF-Navy) Naval Ships…

  • DaSaint

    Can USNI News please implement a proper journalistic policy of proofreading articles and having an editor read individual journalist’s submissions BEFORE they are posted? Please? My High School English Teacher (rest his soul) would be cussing up a storm if he read half the articles posted this past year. And he was a priest!

    • Albert Romero

      LOL ! hilarious….I studied to be one too…..lol

      • DaSaint

        Please send in your application!

  • scottled

    Once again we see an article in USNI News that has failed the sanity checker, with two significant typos…. “Fitzgerald had in the water” has already been addressed by a previous commenter, but how about “The total cost to repair Fitzgerald, … is about $3687 million”? $3687 million, as in $3.687 BILLION for repairing a ship that cost about half that new. Probably not correct – might there be a decimal that someone missed? “Someone”, as in: the author, the editor, proofreader(s), the editor’s boss, etc. This isn’t my first comment about poor writing here. Bet it won’t be my last.

    • El Kabong

      Nowadays, the MSM puts the “K” in “Kwality”….

  • originalone

    And these planners are who we rely upon? If this is an indication of what is in store for the future, then the pooh-baas better rethink that massive tax cut and reverse it to a massive tax increase, on those who can afford it. Perhaps this is trickle down educations fault insofar as writing the story?

  • RobM1981

    OK, so aside from the comments on grammar, spelling, and error-checking…

    What about the fact that we can’t seem to move a hull these days without hitting something. Yes, I realize that this wasn’t the navy’s fault, but sheesh…

    • incredulous1

      I don’t think this is mere incompetence. I smell a rat. Think culturally about who would want to see this kind of embarrassment to the US, and who has no shortage of money to buy things/people these days.

      • Vincent J.

        George Soros? Warren Buffet? The Kennedys?

  • Mike Mulligan

    I hate these disjointed stories. Two ships got into a collision within the 7th fleet, unbelievably these same two damaged ships were damaged more under the care of the heavy lift ship’s care.
    As I spoke extensively on, what is going on with the Military Sealift Command???
    What was the nature of the damage of the USS McCain?

    • DaSaint

      This wasn’t due to MSC. These were private sector contractors. I hate to say it, but if this keeps up, the USN will require its own heavy-lift ship!

      • Secundius

        Maybe through the Merchant Marines? Because with all honesty I can’t see the US Congress coming up with the Funds to By Them for the US Navy…

  • RTColorado

    The US Navy has a rich and long tradition of giving ships nicknames; the USS Constitution was “Old Ironsides”, the USS United States was “Old Rag Wagon”, etc., etc., etc.. Which makes me wonder what nickname the USS Fitzgerald will get. Talk about an unlucky ship…after a collision that wrecked her and killed seven sailors, she is further damaged while trying to get her back to a repair facility.

    • Secundius

      Currently it’s the “Fighting Fitz” or “Fightin’ Fitz”!

      • Voice_of_Reason

        should be “on the fritz”!

        • Mike Mulligan

          Remember the USS Miami. That is the ship that was set on fire by a yard worker. Everyone, including the stupid shipyard were expecting the submarine to be repaired. The Navy first declared it was going to be refurbished. A year or so later they disclosed it was too expensive to fix. And it put the submarine force in a pickle.

    • publius_maximus_III


      • DaSaint


      • Mike Mulligan

        The “Sand Pebble”? Doesn’t this term come from the “best generation”? That would be one of my best movies ever?

  • Mike Mulligan

    Thanks on the McCain…