USNI: 30 Ships Lost Directly due to Enemy Action or Accidents since WWII

30 Ships Lost Directly due to Enemy Action or Accidents since WWII

After an arsonist caused $450 million in damage to the USS Miami earlier this year, the U.S. Navy decided that the vessel is worth repairing, thus refusing to add it to the short but fateful list – ships lost since WWII. Between December 1941 and September 1945, over 350 U.S. Navy warships and patrol craft were sunk or damaged beyond repair, the U.S. Naval Institute (USNI) released today.

In the nearly seven decades since, fewer than 30 ships have been lost directly due to enemy action or accidents.

The fire that damaged the USS Miami was set May 23. The Naval Criminal Investigative Service launched an investigation which resulted in the arrest July 20 of Casey James Fury, a 24-year-old civilian worker at the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard.

The losses in such occurrences, whether attributed to human error or technological failures are great, including that of the most recent one when U.S. Navy guided missile destroyer USS Porter collided with a Japanese-owned bulk oil tanker M/V Otowasan near the Strait of Hormuz.

Some examples of such incidents from the past singled out by the USNI from are as follows:

  • USS Solar (DE 221) scuttled after being damaged in an accidental explosion, April 30, 1946
  • USS Chehalis (AOG-48) capsized after a gasoline tank exploded and killed 6, Oct. 7, 1949
  • USS Benevolence (AH-13) sunk after colliding with the SS Mary Luckenbach , April, 25 1950
  • USS Hobson (DMS 26) broke in half and sunk after collision with USS Wasp (CV 18), 176 killed, April 26, 1952
  • USNS Mission San Francisco (T-AO-123) collided with the Liberian freighter Elna II and exploded, March 7, 1957
  • USNS Mission San Miguel (T-AO-129) ran aground Oct. 8, 1957 and declared unfit for further naval service
  • USS Stickleback (SS-415) sunk in collision with USS Silverstein (DE-534) off Hawaii, May 29, 1958
  • USS Grouse (AMS-15) ran aground on Sept. 12, 1963 and then destroyed with explosives when attempts to dislodge failed

Naval Today Staff, August 29, 2012; Image: US Navy