Tuesday, April 14, 2009

USS Hartford Commanding Officer Relieved

BAHRAIN (March 21, 2009) The Los Angeles-class attack submarine USS Hartford (SSN 768) pulls into Mina Salman pier in Bahrain where U.S. Navy engineers and inspection teams will asses and evaluate damage that resulted from a collision with the amphibious transport dock ship USS New Orleans (LPD 18) in the Strait of Hormuz March 20. Overall damage to both ships is being evaluated. The incident remains under investigation. Hartford is deployed to the U.S. 5th fleet area of responsibility to support maritime security operations. (U.S. Navy photo by Cmdr. Jane Campbell.)

Dispatches from the Front:
ALSO SEE: Photo Essay: USS Hartford, USS New Orleans Collision Damage
MANAMA, Bahrain, April 14, 2009 -- The commanding officer of USS Hartford (SSN 768) was relieved of command April 14 due to loss of confidence.

Rear Adm. Michael J. Connor, commander, Task Force 54 (CTF 54) and commander, Submarine Group 7, relieved the commanding officer of USS Hartford (SSN 768), Cmdr. Ryan Brookhart.

Connor expressed his loss of confidence in Brookhart's ability to command. Brookhart was in command of Hartford when the submarine collided with USS New Orleans (LPD 18) March 20, in the Strait of Hormuz. Although the investigations into the accident are not complete, Connor determined that there was enough information to make the leadership change.

Cmdr. Chris Harkins, deputy commander of Submarine Squadron 8, assumed command of Hartford April 14. Harkins previously commanded USS Montpelier (SSN 765).

Brookhart has been temporarily assigned to the CTF 54 staff in Bahrain.

(Report from a Combined Maritime Forces Public Affairs news release.)

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