Sailors on aircraft carriers will get better opportunities for sleep under Navy

It only took the loss of 17 lives to figure out that fatigue is no good for safety??


“Our destroyers keep running into things, so we’ll make sure the carrier people get some sleep.”

Impeccable logic.


8 hours sleep?
Sheer, unadulterated luxury.

Typical government/navy style problem solving.

First, the Fitzgerald & McCain aren’t aircraft carriers, they’re destroyers.

Second, everyone on the bridge of an aircraft carrier can be asleep & they aren’t going to hit any other vessels. Anyone who has sailed near those small floating cities knows to stay the heck out of their way. At open sea, it’s not like a US Navy carrier is going to alter course so the other vessel can keep its heading.

That’s not strictly true. For one, the HMAS Melbourne had a habit of cutting destroyers in half.

. . . WTF??? Blaming Melbourne???
On the night before USS EVANS was bisected, USS LARSON [DD-830] f’kd up and turned TOWARD the carrier, causing risk of collision. MELBOURNE hailed LARSON on the radio to warn LARSON away.

I know - I was aboard LARSON on her next WESTPAC, sailing with witnesses of that collision. Their experience of that night, including going aboard the floating remains of EVANS - made an indelible impression on me, which I carried with me in my merchant career. The surest way to get fired when I was master was to stupidly steer the ship into danger. You didn’t get a second chance to kill us.

Easy now. I was just countering the argument that carriers are inherently safe because nobody would get in their way.

The carrier didn’t sink. The destroyers sank. Nobody got hurt aboard the carrier (although there were some startled chaps and a bit of a mess in the sailors heads - the closest inhabited compartment to the bow and on a lower deck), hence carriers are safer - if only in that respect.

I was often OOW in destroyers/escorts for MELBOURNE and the strict rule (common sense) was never turn towards her when stationed ahead. Carrier’s nav lights can be confusing too not being symmetrical to the centreline.

Typically aboard a large ship there are enough of the variously qualified people to run the ship AND get eight hours uninterrupted sleep, but smaller ships won’t necessarily have that luxury.

Watchkeepers may be one in three and have a requirement to be awake for other activities. That would never allow eight hours uninterrupted sleep, but can be adequately managed with monitored work and rest periods.

This is not the answer to avoiding collisions at sea. Simple situational awareness of those on watch is.

Had a meeting situation with a destroyer…USS Jason Dunham…open ocean, traffic non existent…they call me up on 16 and want to go port to port. The problem with that bonehead idea was that we were gonna meet well and clear starboard (1.55 NM).

Another time, had a bone head Navy ship…looked like a floating box, crossing me from port to stbd…fine…good BCR and CPA…until she slows down and wants to do some helicopter launching.

Navy vessels…they are about as dangerous as a Sudanese livestock transport.

Perhaps you should consider that they are not simply carrying stuff on the shortest route from A to B ie “having due regard to … any special circumstances” etc. I’d consider helicopter launching a sufficient reason for the warship to alter course and for the merchant ship to adjust accordingly.

My experience in the navy was that we went out of our way to not encumber passing merchant ships by our exercises, often suspending activity until the merchantman was clear.

If you want unpredictable and erratic behaviour at sea try fishing boats.

Lol…yeah, those fishing boat captains can be nuts.