Recovered Data Recording Device Offers Insights on Fitzgerald Accident

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The captain of a Japanese cargo ship that collided with a US warship earlier this month killing seven sailors says he warned the vessel before the fatal crash, but his signals went ignored.

Spokesmen from the Japan Coast Guard (JCG), U.S. Coast Guard and ship owner, Dainichi Invest, also declined to comment. The onboard crewmen think they might take much time to flush out the water from their ship, and they are also being supplemented by the nearby U.S. destroyer USS Dewey which sends its sailors to help out USS Fitzgerald. Japanese transport safety officials said they obtained the voyage data recorder, similar to an airplane's "black box", from the ACX Crystal, which is now docked in Yokohama near Tokyo.

The Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Fitzgerald (DDG 62) returns to Fleet Activities (FLEACT) Yokosuka following a collision with a merchant vessel while operating southwest of Yokosuka, Japan.

The worst Navy accident in recent memory is now the subject of multiple investigations by the U.S. Navy and Coast Guard, as well as the Japanese Coast Guard and Transportation Board.

The sailors either had to close off the flooded areas of the ship, or they feared the entire destroyer might go down, according to three active or former members of the Navy familiar with the incident.

A number of Sailors' remains that were missing from the collision between USS Fitzgerald (DDG 62) and a merchant ship have been found.

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It is not known why the two vessels did not immediately contact the coast guard, Japanese officials say. The crew helped him to the bridge, but he was so badly injured that he had to be Medevaced off the ship and the second in command took over.

An accident during computerized navigation also "raises the possibility the container ship's computer system could have been hacked and the ship deliberately steered into the USS Fitzgerald", the Beacon report said.

"They requested our help in the rescue operations", he said.

"There are multiple US and Japanese investigations underway to determine the facts of the collision", said Chief of Naval Operations Adm. John Richardson.

AIS was developed in the late 1990s as a radio-based transponder system, initially meant to be used as part of a collision avoidance system for ships operating out of range of land-based shipping controllers. "The damage to the destroyer's side suggests the container's bow slammed into it at a significant speed".

The Navy investigators are now trying to determine why the Fitzgerald's radar and sensors did not detect the freighter in time to avoid the collision.