A Dozen Sailors Checked for Smoke Inhalation After USS Milwaukee Fireplace at Florida Naval Base

The Navy has offered new particulars concerning the hearth that broke out final week aboard the USS Milwaukee, a littoral fight ship primarily based at Naval Station Mayport close to Jacksonville, Florida, suggesting the harm was minor. However assessments are ongoing.

“Presently it seems that the harm was restricted to a single stateroom,” Navy spokesman Lt. Anthony Junco instructed Navy.com in an e mail Monday.

Junco stated that 13 folks have been “evaluated for attainable smoke inhalation points,” however none required hospitalization.

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On Friday, the Navy confirmed that {an electrical} hearth had damaged out on the ship shortly earlier than 2 p.m. Stories initially appeared on social media however have been confirmed by native hearth division and Navy officers.

Junco defined that the Navy continues to be “assessing the total extent of the harm … and the potential prices which may be required if repairs are vital.”

Sailors from the Milwaukee have been the primary to answer the fireplace, however Junco confirmed stories that close by ships additionally despatched crew members to assist.

That is the second occasion that has thrust the littoral fight ship into the information not too long ago. From late December 2021 via early January 2022, the ship battled an outbreak of COVID-19 whereas it was on a deployment to South America. The outbreak pressured the ship to remain at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, as about one-quarter of the crew got here down with the illness. The ship was underway lower than two weeks later, and the incident seemed to be an indicator of how shortly the Navy may climate a COVID-19 outbreak amongst a totally vaccinated crew.

The Milwaukee returned from that deployment in April 2022. In Might, the ship participated in New York’s Fleet Week.

Fires aboard ships — even these in port — are harmful and might usually spiral uncontrolled, as not too long ago evidenced by the USS Bonhomme Richard.

The amphibious assault ship noticed a hearth get away in its decrease cargo maintain on the morning of July 12, 2020. The blaze burned for 4 days, generally topping 1,200 levels. Though it was finally put out, the Navy determined the ship could be too expensive to restore, and it was decommissioned. The service alleges the fireplace was set by a younger, disgruntled sailor, although he has but to face trial on these prices.

That wasn’t the primary time the Navy has needed to scrap a ship after a port hearth. The USS Miami, an assault submarine, had a hearth get away whereas it was within the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard in 2012. A later investigation decided that the fireplace was intentionally set by a shipyard worker. Restore prices for that fireplace additionally in the end led to the vessel being decommissioned as an alternative of repaired.

In contrast to these two notable examples, there was no indication that the Milwaukee’s hearth was intentionally set, based on the Navy.

— Konstantin Toropin will be reached at konstantin.toropin@navy.com. Observe him on Twitter @ktoropin.

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