USS Newport News (SSN-750)
USS Newport News, in October 2004
|Name:||USS Newport News|
|Namesake:||The City of Newport News, Virginia|
|Awarded:||19 April 1982|
|Builder:||Newport News Shipbuilding|
|Laid down:||3 March 1984|
|Launched:||15 March 1986|
|Commissioned:||3 June 1989|
|Status:||in active service|
|Class and type:||Los Angeles-class submarine|
|Length:||110.3 m (361 ft 11 in)|
|Beam:||10 m (32 ft 10 in)|
|Draft:||9.4 m (30 ft 10 in)|
|Test depth:||290 m (950 ft)|
|Complement:||13 officers; 121 enlisted|
The contract to build her was awarded to Newport News Shipbuilding and Dry Dock Company in Newport News, Virginia on 19 April 1982 and her keel was laid down on 3 March 1984. She was launched on 15 March 1986 sponsored by Mrs. Rosemary D. Trible, and commissioned on 3 June 1989. Mayor Jessie M. Rattley presented the ship with a commemorative plaque containing the poem "Newport News," written by Newport News native Ronald W. Bell, whose poem "Admiral Rickover" also appears upon a plaque aboard the Los Angeles class submarine Hyman G. Rickover.Ref: Naval Submarine Base, Groton, Ct. The poem appears on this page with permission from the author: ref: Sub Squadron 8, NOB, Norfolk
Harbor of a thousand ships
Forger of a nation's fleet
Gateway to the New World
Where ocean and river meet
Strength wrought from steel
And a people's fortitude
Such is the timeless legacy
Of a place called Newport News.
Newport News returned to Norfolk, Virginia, following a six-month overseas deployment that included operations in the Middle East. In support of Operation Iraqi Freedom she launched 19 UGM-109C Tomahawk Land Attack Missiles in March 2003. She deployed in August 2004, first to take part in joint operations with allied navies in the North Atlantic, then to the U.S. Central Command area of operations "in support of national security interests and the global war on terrorism."
Collision with Japanese ship
On 8 January 2007, Newport News was operating submerged in the Arabian Sea south of the Straits of Hormuz when it hit the Japanese tanker Mogamigawa. She had been operating as part of Carrier Strike Group 8 (CSG-8), organized around the aircraft carrier Dwight D. Eisenhower (CVN-69). The Carrier Strike Group was redeploying to the Indian Ocean to support a maritime cordon during the war in Somalia when the incident happened. Newport News suffered damage to her bow, but there was no damage to the sail, mast or reactor, and she made for port in Bahrain under her own power. Newport News was escorted from the mouth of the Straits of Hormuz to Bahrain by the Guided Missile Destroyer Benfold. This was due to the fact that the submarine was unable to transit submerged and has no surface defense capabilities. During the transit, Iranian aircraft and warships shadowed the ships. An official of the Kawasaki Kisen Company (or K Line), which owns the tanker, announced that Mogamigawa's hull and propellers were damaged.
According to a Navy spokesman, the collision occurred as a result of the venturi effect. The tanker drove over the area where the submarine was submerged and this created a sucking effect that forced the submarine upward to the surface. The incident was the third collision between a U.S. nuclear-powered submarine and a Japanese civilian ship.
On 29 January, after the boat returned to Bahrain for repairs, administrative personnel actions (Admiral's Mast) were taken against several members of her crew, which included relieving the boat's commanding officer, Commander Matthew A. Weingart, of command due to a lack of confidence in his ability to command.
On 10 April the Iranian Fars News Agency reported that Newport News has been leaking radioactive and chemical pollution in the Persian Gulf and claimed that following this formal complaint, the ship departed the gulf for a complete overhaul. The US Navy Fifth Fleet denied this claim restating that damage was limited to the bow and that the sail, mast and reactors were not damaged. On 2 October 2007 the U.S. Navy agreed to pay Kawasaki Kisen Kaisha Ltd, the company that owns Mogamigawa an undisclosed amount in compensation for the collision.
- U.S. sub collides with Japan ship, CNN, 8 January 2007.
- Eisenhower Strike Group Completes JTFEX 06-2
- DeYoung, Karen (8 January 2007). "U.S. Strike in Somalia Targets Al-Qaeda Figure". The Washington Post. Retrieved 27 May 2010.
- Dorsey, Jack (9 January 2007). "Navy sub damaged in collision heads for port in Bahrain". The Virginian-Pilot. Retrieved 11 January 2007.
- "Japan's tanker sustains hull breach, propeller damage". Information Telegraph Agency of Russia. 11 January 2007. Retrieved 11 January 2007.
- Dorsey, Jack (10 July 2007). "Navy says speed of tanker sucked submarine up to surface". The Virginian-Pilot. Retrieved 11 January 2007.
- Kiroku Hanai (23 January 2007). "U.S. presence vs. the public will". Japan Times.
- "USS Newport News Commanding Officer Relieved of Duty". WTKR Newschannel 3. 29 January 2007. Retrieved 30 January 2007.
- "US Submarine Forced to Leave Persian Gulf". FARS News Agency. 10 April 2007. Retrieved 11 April 2007. (Note that the image accompanying the FARS article is not a Los Angeles class submarine.)
- "U.S. withdraws damaged sub said by Iran to leak radiation into Gulf". World Tribune. 13 April 2007. Retrieved 1 February 2008.
- "U.S. Navy to pay for hitting tanker". Japan Times. Kyodo News. 3 October 2007.
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