Sailors Injured in USS John C. Stennis Flight Deck Mishap (UPDATE)
SAN DIEGO (March 31, 2011) - Eleven people aboard the USS John C. Stennis (CVN 74) sustained injuries March 30 when an F/A-18C Hornet assigned to Marine Fighter Attack Training Squadron (VMFAT) 101 suffered a catastrophic engine failure and subsequently caught fire.
The injured personnel were working on the flight deck near the jet when the incident occurred at 2:50 p.m. and were initially treated by the ship’s medical personnel.
Four Sailors were flown to Naval Medical Center San Diego Wednesday. Of those, one has been treated and released and three others are in stable condition.
Seven injured personnel remained aboard the ship for treatment. They included four Sailors, one Marine, and two civilians working with VMFAT 101. The pilot of the aircraft was not injured.
"I am extremely proud of our crew," said Stennis’ Commanding Officer Capt. Ronald Reis. "The flight deck of an aircraft carrier is an inherently dangerous place, but our personnel are well-trained to operate safely in this environment. They responded quickly, professionally and with purpose, extinguishing the aircraft engine fire."
The fire was quickly extinguished, and there is no significant damage to the ship. Flight operations will resume March 31.
Other reports of a Sailor being airlifted to Scripps Memorial Hospital are not related to this incident.
The cause of the mishap is under investigation.
USS John C. Stennis is homeported in Bremerton, Wash., and was conducting Fleet Replacement Squadron Carrier Qualifications in the Southern California operating area at the time of the mishap. VMFAT-101 is based at Marine Corps Air Station Miramar.