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Thursday, December 31, 2009

Encountered by USS Ross

Here's a news item in the Palm Beach Post today by AP's David Sharp:

— Cruising through the darkness in rough seas, the USS Ross encountered a rogue wave that smashed into the destroyer's bow, sending a shudder along the entire ship that knocked sleeping crew out of their bunks and damaged the sonar housing.

As alarms sounded, sleepy sailors scrambled to shore up the leak.

"We cracked the hull and kept on going like it was nothing," retired sailor Jonathan Staeblein, of Hagerstown, Md., recalled. In fact, the 510-foot destroyer was never out of service for repairs during any deployment in the three years he served aboard as an electronic warfare technician.

The article was about the destroyer's strong records, but it was inadvertently disclosed that USS Ross encountered a freaque wave that had caused damages without causing service disruption. Unfortunately there was no detail information about the freaque wave encountered. We don't know where or when the encountered took place and we don't know what or how high the freaque wave was. May be someday the details will be come out, at any rate, all we know that an encounter of freaque wave did happen to USS Ross during the last 22 years. So freaque waves have no preferences on who or where to hit. Just someone at the wrong place and the wrong time. They encounter small boats, fishing vessels, cargo ships, cruise ships, and military destroyers all the same! The only thing we can surmise is probably that large ships can sustain damages but survive, smaller vessels certainly could not expect the same. Beyond all the unknowns on where, when, what, how or why, the chance for an encounter is still relatively low, so just hope for the best and pray!

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