Friday, January 27, 2023

A guided-missile cruiser spilled diesel fuel into the York River. The Navy is investigating

File photo of the guided-missile cruiser USS Philippine Sea (CG 58). (WYDaily/Courtesy of the U.S. Navy)
File photo of the guided-missile cruiser USS Philippine Sea (CG 58). (WYDaily/Courtesy of the U.S. Navy)

U.S. Navy officials said they are investigating what caused the Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser USS Philippine Sea (CG-58) to spill nearly 4,000 gallons of diesel fuel into the York River.

Ted Brown, from the Public Affairs Office/ Installations and Environmental Public Affairs Officer for U.S. Fleet Forces Command, said the spill happened at around 7 a.m. last Thursday (May 7) while the ship was pierside at the Naval Weapons Station in Yorktown.

“Containment booms were in place at the time of the incident, Brown wrote in an email. “The majority of the spill was contained within the pre-positioned boom and under the pier.  Recovery and cleanup efforts began immediately.”

Several agencies responded to the incident, including the Navy Oil Spill Recovery Unit, Coast Guard, Virginia Department of Environmental Quality, Virginia Department of Emergency Management, Fish and Wildlife, and the Environmental Protection Agency.

The fuel was recovered using a fuel vacuum truck and fuel absorbing materials by Thursday afternoon,” Brown said. “The remaining sheen was unrecoverable and dissipated with minimal impact to the shoreline.”

John Mangalonzo
John Mangalonzo
John Mangalonzo ( is the managing editor of Local Voice Media’s Virginia papers – WYDaily (Williamsburg), Southside Daily (Virginia Beach) and HNNDaily (Hampton-Newport News). Before coming to Local Voice, John was the senior content editor of The Bellingham Herald, a McClatchy newspaper in Washington state. Previously, he served as city editor/content strategist for USA Today Network newsrooms in St. George and Cedar City, Utah. John started his professional journalism career shortly after graduating from Lyceum of The Philippines University in 1990. As a rookie reporter for a national newspaper in Manila that year, John was assigned to cover four of the most dangerous cities in Metro Manila. Later that year, John was transferred to cover the Philippine National Police and Armed Forces of the Philippines. He spent the latter part of 1990 to early 1992 embedded with troopers in the southern Philippines as they fought with communist rebels and Muslim extremists. His U.S. journalism career includes reporting and editing stints for newspapers and other media outlets in New York City, California, Texas, Iowa, Utah, Colorado and Washington state.

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