This could only happen to the poor LCS program. The USS Montgomery (LCS-8), already in port in Mayport for repairs after suffering two engineering casualties in 24 hours in mid-September, took a “knock” from a tug as it was putting to sea ahead of an expected hurricane and suffered a 1 ft x 1/4 inch crack along a weld seam as well as some bent stringers (horizontal hull structural beams) (1)
My issue with this incident is the physical weakness demonstrated by the ship as a result of what appears to have been a fairly mild contact with a tug. What does this say about the LCS’ ability to absorb actual battle damage? The Navy has stated that the LCS was only designed to stay afloat long enough after a hit to allow the crew to escape. Of course, I’m ignoring the fact that the Navy has also claimed that the LCS was built to Level 1+ (Level 2 except for one or two minor requirements) standards which means that the ship should be able to take a hit and keep fighting so there’s an inherent contradiction but, I digress …
This lightness of construction is not limited to the LCS. We’ve seen that the Aegis cruiser,
Port Royal, was severely or permanently damaged by nosing gently aground.
The Burkes were found to have been too lightly built and have had to have reinforcing plates added to the hull.
I’ve commented on the Navy’s tendency over the last few decades to build ships far too weak, physically. I won’t belabor the point. This is just more evidence that the Navy has forgotten how to build warships.
(1)Navy Times website, “Tug Collides With LCS
, Cracks The Montgomery ”, David B. Larter, Hull 6-Oct-2016,