The amphibious assault ship Kearsarge suffered a “mechanical failure” of the ship’s emergency diesel generator back in April, officials confirmed this week.
While the Class A mishap happened on April 14 while the ship was underway in the Virginia Capes for basic phase sea trials, the incident was not reported on the Naval Safety Center’s mishap report until last month. Class A mishaps involve damages of at least $2.5 million or a fatality or permanent total disability.
That listing notes that the emergency diesel generator was “significantly damaged upon start.”
No injuries were reported, but the generator will need to be replaced, a job that is not expected to be completed until January, according to the safety center and Naval Surface Force Atlantic officials.
The mishap does not appear to have affected the 28-year-old amphib’s ability to get underway, as Kearsarge was at sea in recent weeks conducting surface warfare advanced tactical training, according to a Navy release.
SURFLANT referred questions to the safety center about why the mishap was not made public until nearly six months after the incident.
Safety Center officials said that while the agency strives to report mishap statistics in a timely manner, “occasionally delays occur” due to various levels of the reporting system.
“We rely on several actions by the reporting organization, to include initial reporting via the operational report (OPREP), time taken by the organization to determine mishap classification based upon extent of property damage and seriousness of injuries, and inputs into our Risk Management Information (RMI) mishap reporting system,” safety center officials said in a statement. “Sometimes those actions cause delays in posting to our mishap statistics summary.”
Safety center data shows the Kearsarge’s ordeal was the lone Class A afloat mishap of fiscal 2021, which ended Sept. 30.
In addition to emergency situations, emergency diesel generators can be used for training on simulated emergencies.
Geoff is a senior staff reporter for Military Times, focusing on the Navy. He covered Iraq and Afghanistan extensively and was most recently a reporter at the Chicago Tribune. He welcomes any and all kinds of tips at firstname.lastname@example.org.