Home Americas US submarine Connecticut hit uncharted seamount in South China Sea, navy says

US submarine Connecticut hit uncharted seamount in South China Sea, navy says

USS Connecticut before South China Sea collision
USS Connecticut (SSN 22) getting underway from Naval Base Kitsap-Bremerton for its 2021 deployment. Photo: US Navy

The US Navy says it has determined that the Seawolf-class attack submarine USS Connecticut (SSN-22), which was involved in a collision during operations in the South China Sea recently, hit an uncharted seamount.

A nearly month-long investigation points to the USS Connecticut having grounded on the underwater feature, a USNI News report said.

The submarine was involved in the collision on October 2, and the navy first confirmed the event on October 7. Following the collision, the submarine transited to Guam under its own power, where it remains to this day awaiting inspections and repairs.

Satellite images of the sub in Guam obtained by The Warzone did not immediately reveal significant damages to the boat. It remains possible, however, that the brunt of the damage occurred below the submarine’s surfaced waterline and thus unobservable on satellite images.

The navy has repeatedly noted that the submarine’s nuclear propulsion plant and spaces were not affected by the accident and remain fully operational.

The USNI News report said the findings of the investigation have been handed over to US 7th Fleet commander Vice Adm. Karl Thomas, who will further determine whether “additional accountability actions will be necessary.”

USS Connecticut was on a deployment to the Pacific at the time of the collision, having departed its Naval Base Kitsap-Bremerton homeport in May.

During its 2021 deployment, the submarine operated in the Western Pacific visiting Japan twice.