Monday, April 2, 2001

USS Greeneville

Greeneville to leave
drydock today for
more testing

By Gregg K. Kakesako

The nuclear attack submarine USS Greeneville was to leave a Pearl Harbor drydock today after $2 million worth of inspections, testing and repair following its collision with a Japanese training ship Feb. 9.

It will be moved into another area of Pearl Harbor, where it will undergo more testing in preparation for a six-month deployment.

The 6,000-ton sub entered drydock on Feb. 20 -- 11 days after the fatal accident with the Ehime Maru, which claimed the lives of nine Japanese boys and men. The sub's rubber skin and rudder were damaged when it surfaced into the hull of the Ehime Maru, sending the Japanese vessel 2,003 feet to the Pacific bottom nine miles south of Diamond Head.

The Navy is still trying to determine the environmental hazards in raising the vessel.

Also pending is the findings of a Navy court of inquiry into the accident, which concluded Mar. 20. One option being weighed by the panel of three senior U.S. admirals is whether to recommend that Adm. Thomas Fargo, commander of the Pacific Fleet, convene a court martial for Cmdr. Scott Waddle.

Waddle, the Greeneville's skipper, could be charged with negligent homicide. Maximum penalties include dismissal, forfeiture of all pay and allowances and three years in prison. He also could be sentenced to three years for each of the nine deaths, a total of 27 years.

Other possible charges include dereliction of duty and improperly hazarding a naval vessel.

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