Battleships:

Issues Arising from the Explosion Aboard the U.S.S. Iowa

T-NSIAD-90-46: Published: May 25, 1990. Publicly Released: May 25, 1990.

Additional Materials:

Contact:

Office of Public Affairs
(202) 512-4800
youngc1@gao.gov

GAO discussed several issues pertaining to a gun turret explosion on the U.S.S. Iowa. GAO noted that concern has been expressed on the adequacy of the Navy's investigation and the continued safety of battleships, and: (1) conducted an independent investigation of the Navy's technical analysis of likely causes of the explosion; (2) reviewed the battleship's safety; and (3) examined manning and training issues raised by the vessel's commander after the explosion. GAO found that: (1) the impact sensitivity of the gunpowder in combination with an overram at higher-than-normal speeds could have caused the explosion; (2) safety policies and procedures were not being followed at the time of the explosion; and (3) the vessel was assigned a disproportionably low percentage of enlisted supervisory personnel, including gunners mates and fire controlmen. GAO believes that: (1) further testing on the Navy's technical findings is needed; (2) the safety violations did not contribute to the explosion; and (3) the quality of manning was lower than for naval ships on average.

Sep 22, 2016

Sep 15, 2016

Aug 15, 2016

Aug 1, 2016

Jun 20, 2016

Jun 13, 2016

May 25, 2016

Apr 14, 2016

Mar 10, 2016

Looking for more? Browse all our products here