10 sailors missing after U.S. Navy destroyer collides with merchant ship

10 sailors missing after U.S. Navy destroyer collides with merchant ship

The USS John S. McCain, a guided-missile destroyer, was involved in a collision early Monday with a merchant vessel east of Singapore and the Strait of Malacca resulting in damage to its port side aft, according to the U.S. Navy.

Search and rescue efforts are underway, U.S. Navy's 7th Fleet says. Officials say 10 sailors are missing and five are injured.

The Singaporean Navy is sending assets to assist and the USS America is en route to help. The collision was reported at 6:24 a.m. Japan Standard Time, according to the U.S. Navy.

"In addition to tug boats out of Singapore, the Republic of Singapore Navy ship RSS Gallant, RSN helicopters and Police Coast Guard vessel Basking Shark are currently in the area to render assistance," the Navy's statement read.

The ship was on its way to Singapore after finishing what the Navy called "routine patrols" in the South China Sea. One of those patrols was a Freedom of Navigation mission near contested islands which China has built and claims as their own in the South China around August 10.

Senator John McCain sent the following message on Twitter in response: "Cindy & I are keeping America's sailors aboard the USS John S McCain in our prayers tonight."

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