US 7th Fleet ships deployed in Yokosuka undergo training during operational pause

YOKOSUKA, Japan - US 7th Fleet ships deployed in Yokosuka, Japan, have participated in a one-day operational pause during which officers and crew underwent risk management and communications training.

The US Navy ordered the operational pause after its warship USS John S. McCain collided with merchant vessel Alnic MC east of Singapore on Monday (Aug 21).

The US 7th Fleet said officers and crew assigned to its ships forward-deployed to Fleet Activities Yokosuka participated in the operational pause on Wednesday.

The participants covered topics including bridge resource management, communications, radar fundamentals, operational risk management and case studies of previous maritime incidents, the US 7th Fleet said in a press statement.

The operational pause was directed by Chief of Naval Operations Admiral John Richardson in response to recent operational incidents in the western Pacific.

Admiral Scott Swift, commander of US Pacific Fleet, said: "Each command will take a full work-day dedicated to this operational pause."

"I expect this pause to be led by each of you with full participation by the chain of command. There can be no bystanders. Bystanders become weak links and need extra attention and leadership. During this pause, focus on fundamentals - both individual and team."

The US 7th Fleet is the largest of the US Navy's forward ­deployed fleets. There are about 50 to 70 ships and submarines, 140 aircraft, and about 20,000 sailors in the region.

The fleet's area of operation spans more than 124 million sq km, stretching from the International Date Line to the India-Pakistan border,; and from the Kuril Islands in the North to the Antarctic in the South.