Thanks to a nasty collision with a guided missile cruiser during regular training exercises last October, the (now former) submarine commander of the USS Montpelier has been removed from his post effective this past Friday by Navy officials following an in-depth investigation into the incident, during which the Montpelier collided with the USS Jacinto not too far off the coast of Florida in October of last year.
At the time the Navy said:
“If we do have an incident that does take place, there are folks that swing into action… to help us make a better, more conclusive explanation of exactly what happened,” Badura said.
According to ABC New, In an official statement from the Navy, high level officials blamed the accident on pure human error on the part of many people in the crew of the Montpelier, but primarily the commander of the vessel, a Commander Thomas Winter.
An investigation into the October 13 collision concluded:
The investigation revealed that the principal cause of the collision was human error, poor teamwork by the Montpelier watch team, and the commanding officer’s failure to follow established procedures for submarines operating at periscope depth. Additionally, the investigation revealed contributing factors threaded among the various command and control headquarters that provide training and operational oversight within Fleet Forces Command.
As a result of being removed from his previous post as the commander of the Montpelier, Cmdr. Winter has been reassigned to the Submarine Force Atlantic headquarters, where he will work a desk job taking care of administrative duties in Norfolk Virginia.