US guided-missile destroyer collides with Japanese merchant ship in the Pacific

The forward-deployed guided-missile destroyer USS Fitzgerald (DDG 62) operates in the Pacific while on patrol in the 7th Fleet area of responsibility.
US Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist Seaman David Flewellyn

The USS Fitzgerald, a guided-missile destroyer, has collided with a Japanese merchant vessel about 56 nautical miles southwest of Yokosuka, Japan, according to a statement from the US Navy’s Pacific Fleet.

The crash happened at approximately 2:30 a.m. local time, June 17, and the Navy requested Japan’s Coast Guard’s assistance.

According to the Navy, the extent of the damage to the ship and possible injuries to personnel are still being investigated, as well as the incident itself.

The Fitzgerald had recently made a port call to the US Navy’s Subic Bay base in the Philippines and conducted patrols in the South China Sea.

The Fitzgerald maintains constant contact with Japan as it is forward-based in Yokosuka.