USS Bonhomme Richard On Fire At Naval Base San Diego After An Explosion, 21 Injured

USS Bonhomme Richard On Fire At Naval Base San Diego After An Explosion, 21 Injured

Details remain limited, but the Wasp-class amphibious assault ship USS Bonhomme Richard (LHD-6) is burning pier-side at Naval Base San Diego. There are reports of 21 injured, including 17 sailors and 4 civilians. The 21 injuries were reported as non-life-threatening and all victims are in stable condition at area hospitals. No cause of the fire has been determined as the blaze continues.

There were 160 sailors aboard at the time the fire started, and the entire crew is off the ship and accounted for, Naval Surface Forces said. Two neighboring Navy ships — the USS Fitzgerald and USS Russell — have since moved away from the fire.

Reports early Monday morning suggested the ship may not be salvaged as the fire spreads to the ship’s superstructure and helicopters began making water drops on the fire.

The fire aboard the Bonhomme Richard began before 8:50 AM Sunday morning local time in San Diego between Coronado Island and the city of San Diego near the Coronado Bay Bridge.

The first report of fire reached authorities at 8:50 AM. Fire boats could be seen battling the blaze as massive smoke plumes spread over the city. Some witnesses did report an explosion before the fire began, although the U.S. Navy told media there was no explosion on board the ship and the noise was caused by a “change in air pressure”.

There is no live ammunition currently onboard the USS Bonhomme Richard as she undergoes maintenance. There is a million gallons of fuel oil onboard the ship, but the Navy says the fuel is in no danger of igniting from the blaze.

U.S. Navy Rear Adm. Philip Sobeck, commander of Expeditionary Strike Group 3, told reporters in a story published by the San Diego Union Tribune that, “The Navy believes the fire began in a lower cargo hold, a deep V area, where marine equipment and vehicles are stored”.

San Diego Fire Chief Colin Stowell texted that the Navy would have contingencies in place to bring the fire onboard under control, but Stowell was also quoted by CNN as saying the ship could, “Burn for days”. Other news outlets reported that “significant progress” had been made fighting the fire, with firefighters reported back on board the ship as they continued to battle flames, although this news seemed unlikely as the fire intensified into Monday morning.

Two fires crews were still on board the ship Sunday afternoon, Federal Fire San Diego Division Chief Rob Bondurant said in a statement.

“Federal Fire is rotating their crews aboard the ship with U.S. Navy firefighting crews from the waterfront to fight the fire in order to find the seat of the fire and extinguish it,” Bondurant said. “Navy Region Southwest tugs are also continuously combating the fire from the bay.”

As of Sunday evening, firefighters were “at the seat of the fire, if you will,” Sobeck said. The firefighters are clearing compartment spaces in order to close in on the fire, Sobeck said.

The USS Bonhomme Richard (LHD-6) is the third U.S. Navy ship to carry the name of the famed frigate originally commanded by John Paul Jones in 1779. The ship’s name is a reference to U.S. founding father Benjamin Franklin, and is taken from Franklin’s then-popular publication “Poor Richard’s Almanac”.

The USS Bonhomme Richard (LHD-6) is the third U.S. Navy ship to carry the name of the famed frigate originally commanded by John Paul Jones in 1779. The ship’s name is a reference to U.S. founding father Benjamin Franklin, and is taken from Franklin’s then-popular publication “Poor Richard’s Almanac”.

Check Also

Watch: F-35B Crashing Into The Ground After Mid-Air Collision With KC-130J During Air-to-air Refueling

Watch: F-35B Crashing Into The Ground After Mid-Air Collision With KC-130J During Air-to-air Refueling

A video posted on Instagram seems to show the F-35B crashing into the ground near …

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *