U.S. Naval Collisions Are Becoming More Frequent
Given that warships often operate in close proximity to each other and within crowded international shipping lanes, there is always a risk of a collision occurring, though it is rare. In the Cold War-era, it happened more often. U.S. and Soviet warships shadowed and provoked each other, leading to some notable collisions such when the Bezzavetny rammed the USS Yorktown in the Black Sea in 1988.
Since 2000, collisions have again increased in frequency. One of the most serious incidents occurred off the coast of Hawaii in 2001 when a surfacing American submarine struck a Japanese fishery high-school training vessel, killing nine people. In 2004, the USS John F. Kennedy, an aircraft carrier, destroyed an Arabian dhow in the Persian Gulf. All onboard that vessel, as many as 15 people, went missing and are believed to have drowned.
This chart shows serious maritime collisions involving U.S. Navy vessels since 1989.