Navy SEALs had an “A” class mishap with a sub but the Pentagon isn’t saying much about it. The good news is that nobody was hurt. Officials just confirmed the incident, which happened during a training exercise last month.
Undersea sub crash
Those SEAL Diving Vehicles are a nifty little sub but they’re also really pricey toys. One “collided with a fixed object during training last month.” The estimate back from the body shop left the Navy with sticker shock.
One of the “secretive” SDVs “secretly suffered a secret mishap during secret training on October 24,” Navy Times reports. They really wrote that, we didn’t make it up.
The mini-sub gets launched from a bigger sub mother ship which ferries SEALs on missions. Fixed objects aren’t fun to collide with. Like a car crash with a brick wall. Naval Safety Command isn’t happy with the crew.
Lt. Cmdr. Kara Handley was acting as spokesperson for Naval Special Warfare Command when she announced that “No one was injured in the mishap.” She didn’t say where it happened or to who. “We cannot provide further details at this time due the ongoing investigation.”
The safety brass labeled the sub wreck a “Class A” mishap. That means a major doozie causing over $2.5 million in damages. The new financial year for the military only started on October 1 and this is already the second “Class A afloat mishap of fiscal 2023.”
It’s not clear which version of the vehicle was involved, we have a new one just out of production. It may have some bugs. This could have been an older one which means different issues. China would love to know which but will factor both versions into their planning.
A new model just arrived
In the spring, command officials announced that they had a new sub capsule fresh off the drawing boards and about to hit the seas. SEAL Delivery Vehicle MK 11 was reported at the time as “at initial operating capability.”
It’s replacing the standard “MK 8 variant that has been ferrying SEALs around under the sea since the early 1980s.” They were due for replacement.
The overall design of the new sub is the same as the older version. Both “are so-called ‘wet, open submersibles,’ meaning that combat divers or SEALs board and ride them to their destination while wearing scuba gear.”
They can shoot a team right through the torpedo tubes and send them out to conduct underwater mayhem against our enemies as needed. As long as they don’t hit an underwater rock.
The brass isn’t saying a whole lot about what was improved with the new sub design but they did mention that the current launch method needs to be expanded.
They’re exploring “additional options for delivering the SEAL subs.” They’re going to need them with the impending “re-unification” of Taiwan about to go down.