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USS Porter (DDG 78) Damaged in Collision With Japanese Oil Tanker | Photos

The guided missile destroyer USS Porter (DDG 78) collided with the Japanese-owned, Panamanian-flagged very large crude carrier (VLCC) M/V Otowasan early Sunday morning near the Strait of Hormuz. A hole approximately 12 feet by 10 feet was ripped in the destroyer’s side. No one has been reported as being hurt in the collision.

Porter sailed to Jebel Ali, UAE and is now pierside for assessment and repair. The U.S. Navy has begun an investigation.

Porter, an Arleigh Burke class Flight II destroyer, was on a scheduled deployment to the U.S. 5th Fleet area of responsibility conducting maritime security operations and theater security cooperation efforts.

Porter is 505 feet long and displaces about 8,900 tons full load. The VLCC Otowasan is more than 1,092 feet long, and can carry 302,477 deadweight tons, although according to reports Otowasan was empty at the time of the collision.


On Aug. 30, the captain of the USS Porter, Cmdr. Martin Arriola, was relieved of his command by Rear Adm. Dave Thomas, commander, Naval Surface Force, Atlantic (COMNAVSURFLANT). Thomas cited a loss of confidence in Arriola in the wake of the USS Porter‘s collision with a Japanese oil tanker. The USS Porter will now be skippered by Cmdr. Dave Richardson, the former executive officer of USS McFaul (DDG 74). Arriola’s removal comes in the midst of a COMNAVSURFLANT investigation and while repairs to the Porter are being conducted in Jebel Ali, United Arab Emirates.

    li class="comment even thread-even depth-1" id="comment-42467">

    Displacement tonnage and deadweight tonnage are not the same thing. If the ship was “empty” its displacement would be a fraction of its DWT. Need some clarification.

    li class="comment byuser comment-author-chuck-oldham bypostauthor odd alt thread-odd thread-alt depth-1" id="comment-42471">

    You’re right. At time of writing all I could find was deadweight tonnage and wrote displacement out of habit without thinking. Thanks for catching that. I still haven’t found actual displacement, and all I can find is the gross tonnage of more than 160,000, but as you know that’s not the same thing. I’m sure she’s over 400,000 fully loaded.

    li class="comment even thread-even depth-1" id="comment-42552">

    DWT is a good reflection on the size of a bulk tanker though. A large tanker’s displacement varies a lot with it’s loadout, and the numbers in the article indicate that the tanker was a lot bigger than the destroyer. And the fact that the damage was on the starboard bow of the destroyer initially does not bode well for the navy crew (i.e. port to port passage). Will be interesting to here the fidings of the investigation on this one.

    li class="comment byuser comment-author-chuck-oldham bypostauthor odd alt thread-odd thread-alt depth-1" id="comment-42553">

    Early information was that there was a port to port passage, but it was from a Russian blog and the translation was sketchy. We didn’t want to speculate pending the investigation. But yes, the tanker is the length of an aircraft carrier and probably four times as heavy as one along with being half as maneuverable, at best, so there are definitely some questions that are occurring to people.