USS Montgomery, the U.S. Navy’s fourth Independence-variant and eighth littoral combat ship, became involved in the third incident since it was commissioned less than two months ago in Alabama.
The latest accident occurred on October 29 while Montgomery was transiting the Panama Canal. According to a USNI News report, LCS 8 collided with one of the walls of the Panama Canal lock suffering damage to the hull.
“Under control of the local Panama Canal Pilot, the ship impacted the center lock wall and sustained an 18-inch-long crack between her port quarter and transom plates,” USNI News quoted U.S. 3rd Fleet Cmdr. Ryan Perry saying.
No water intrusion occurred and the ship is now en route to its new homeport of San Diego, the report further said.
USS Montgomery’s problems started just three days after its September 10 commissioning ceremony. The ship experienced two unrelated “engineering casualties” within a 24-hour period while transiting from Mobile, Alabama, to San Diego. The first “casualty” was a seawater leak in the hydraulic cooling system while the second occurred later in the day on one of its gas turbine engines.
The ship stopped at Naval Station Mayport to conduct repairs before continuing its journey.
As the ship was getting ready to continue its transit to San Diego it was forced to scramble from port on October 4 in order to avoid hurricane Mathew which was headed toward Mayport. The littoral combat ship collided with a tug in the process and suffered a foot-long crack, Navy Times reported.