USS Miami, an American Los Angeles-class “improved” fast attack submarine was undergoing a routine maintenance shipyard availability at Portsmouth Naval Shipyard when she caught fire at 5:41 PM Wednesday evening.
The blaze continued for a full 13 hours until finally extinguished this morning at 6:45 EST.
Rear Admiral Rick Breckenridge, Commander, of Submarine Group Two in Groton, Connecticut commented,
“Portsmouth Naval Shipyard Fire Department and Ship’s force, along with mutual assistance from several other area fire departments, immediately responded and successfully extinguished the fire on USS MIAMI.
“The fire and subsequent damage was limited to the forward compartment spaces only which includes crew living and command and control spaces. The nuclear propulsion spaces were physically isolated from the Forward Compartment early during initial response.
Admiral Breckenridge gave high praise of the heroic actions by the firefighters involved, and acknowledged that minor injuries were sustained by seven response personnel.
“The injured personnel included three Portsmouth Naval Shipyard fire-fighters; two ships force crew members; and two civilian fire-fighters providing support. These personnel were either treated on-scene or transported to a local medical facility for further treatment and all have been released. So all injured personnel have been released and are in good shape. There were no casualties in this fire.
During the firefighting response, the reactor spaces, found in the aft end of the boat, “remained in a safe and stable condition throughout the event.” and shipboard reactor watch standers maintained a reactor room presence throughout the ordeal.
There were no weapons on board and full investigation has begun to determine the cause of the fire.
USS Miami on March 15th: