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    Re: USN Collision Yet Again
    From: Stephen N.G. Davies
    Date: 2017 Aug 23, 08:18 +0800
    What is puzzling if one knows the waters as I do is where it happened. Scott Owen's points about Colregs are good ones, but where the collision is reported to have occurred is the entrance to the scheme. The Alniv MC was on her way in from Taiwan, so will have been steering pretty much E to W. Much the same is likely to have been true for the McCain, since the only N to S passage thereabouts, is pretty much for small vessels only. I've crossed the strait there coming up from the S to get into the westbound lane and with a max 8kts yacht under power it is a tight call - ships are literally half a mile or less apart in a more or less endless stream both ways. Getting across and tucking into the westbound stream positioned to edge across onto the northern side is not for the faint hearted.
    So my sense (haven't found any AIS plot yet) is that POSSIBLY this was an overtaking situation and the key data may be likely to turn out to be the various reports of the McCain having a steering failure.
    The image of the McCain shows what looks like a T-bone with the almost in ballast bulb of the Alnic MC punching a hole into the area of the waterline and the bow rake cutting into the deck edge above.
    Given where the collision happened it is close the impossible to imagine any other scenario bar a sudden loss of control and sheering across the path of a ship immediately astern.
    Stephen D

    Sent from my iPhone

    On 23 Aug 2017, at 6:48 AM, Bill B <NoReply_BillB@fer3.com> wrote:

    On 8/20/2017 9:28 PM, Scott Owen wrote:
    > http://www.live5news.com/story/36177013/us-7th-fleet-uss-john-s-mccain-collides-with-merchant-ship-near-strait-of-malacca
    I did look it up on Google, and saw one comment regarding ROW. It stated
    that, unlike the the last collision, this ship was impacted on the port
    side so it was clearly a port/starboard situation. (That would not
    excuse the McCain for not taking evasive action.) At this point I have
    seen little or no navigation specifics or scenarios regarding the
    incident, only gruesome details on yet another tragic loss of life.
    Port/starboard? Hold on a second sea-lawyer wannabee breath! There
    appear to rules specific to the Straight and traffic separation routes
    (Rule 10). As a layman it is my impression that if you are crossing a
    TSS, other COLREG rules MAY be superseded, and and you must not
    interfere with the passage/safe passage of vessels in the lanes. Below
    is a URL for a safe-passage pamphlet PDF created for navigation in that
    As facts come out, would our current or former professional seamen
    please offer interpretations?

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