Vice Adm. Joseph Aucoin, commander of the U.S. 7th Fleet, is expected to be relieved of his command on Wednesday
The commander of the Navy fleet that had suffered four tragic collisions in Asia — with fatal consequences — is expected to be removed from his post on Wednesday, according to a report.
Seventh Fleet Commander Vice Adm. Joseph Aucoin, who was expected to retire in a matter of weeks, will not continue his duties at the Navy, two officials familiar with the matter told the Wall Street Journal.
The decision to dismiss Aucoin was made by Adm. Scott Swift, commander of the U.S. Pacific Fleet.
Wednesday, the Navy said Adm. Scott Swift, had relieved Vice Adm. Joseph Aucoin, “due to a loss of confidence in his ability to command,” in keeping with the Navy’s tradition of public accountability – commanders or ship captains are dismissed as soon as their superiors lose confidence in their leadership.
The Navy announced Monday that it would suspend the Seventh Fleet’s operations to review the agency’s training.
The move comes after the USS John S. McCain collided Monday with an oil tanker, the Alnic MC, while en route to a port in Singapore.
Ten sailors were missing and five others were injured, officials said. Some remains of the missing sailors were discovered Tuesday, the Navy said.
The damaged hull on the port side of the United States Navy missile destroyer USS John S. McCain which collided with an oil tanker on Thursday
The USS Fitzgerald [photo] and a container ship collided in waters off Japan in June
Two other accidents within U.S. Seventh Fleet’s area of responsibility occurred earlier this year. The first was in January, when the cruiser, the USS Antietam, ran aground near its port in Yokosuka.
In May, the guided missile cruiser USS Lake Champlain collided with a South Korean fishing vessel.