The collision occurred at 2:30 a.m. local time, 100 kilometres South-East of the Japanese city Yokosuka, reported the press service of the US Navy. Later it became known that the destroyer collided with a large container ship ACX Crystal, which was under the flag of Philippines.
There were at least three victims, one of whom is the captain of the ship. They were evacuated by helicopter and taken to the hospital in Yokosuka. Commander Bruce Benson is in stable condition, said the us military.
The Japanese coast guard said that the incident resulted in seven missing crew members of the destroyer. The U.S. Navy confirmed this information. Their fate is unknown.
In a statement, the Navy also stated that the U.S. Navy has requested assistance from the local coast guard and that it is not yet possible to assess the extent of damage caused to the destroyer. And the TV station al-NHK showed footage of see the dent on the hull of the destroyer on the starboard side.
One injured sailor was evacuated by coast guard helicopter reported later, the command of the US Navy. Japanese media later reported that seven crew members of U.S. Navy ship disappeared. Official Navy representatives do not confirm this information, writes Reuters.
According to the Japanese broadcasting Corporation, NBC, NHK, in the disaster area were sent to the ships and aircraft of the coast guard. Reuters, citing al-NHK broadcast that the vessel was the Philippine container ship and that the destroyer was holed, and then he was immobilized. However it became known later that the destroyer continues to move its course.
The destroyer is based at the naval base of the USA in the port of Yokosuka. His weapons are cruise missiles "Tomahawk". The area where the incident occurred, loaded vessels, but a destroyer "Fitzgerald" is one of the most advanced warships in the world with a complex system of radars, says correspondent Bi-bi-si in Tokyo, Rupert Wingfield-Hayes.
In his opinion, now will be a lot of questions about why the crew was unable to avoid a collision with the container ship, which together with the load weighed approximately three times more than an American destroyer.