Japanese Submarine Damaged, Three Crew Members Injured After Collision With Commercial Ship in Pacific Coast

A Japanese submarine collided with a commercial ship as it attempted to surface off the country’s Pacific coast on Monday, government officials said.

Three crew members from the Maritime Self-Defense Force submarine Soryu suffered minor injuries, and pictures from the Japanese Coast Guard showed it sustained damage to its fairwater planes, the winglike structures on its conning tower.

The accident occurred off the main island of Shikoku in southern Japan.

The Soryu, commissioned in 2009, is the first in its class of Japanese diesel electric-powered submarines. It displaces about 3,000 tons and has a crew of around 65.

The Defense Ministry said communications equipment on the sub was also damaged, although it was still able to operate.

“Soryu scraped the hull of the vessel as it was surfacing. It is extremely regrettable the MSDF submarine has collided with a commercial ship,” Defense Minister Nobuo Kishi said.

The commercial vessel — the Hong Kong-registered bulk carrier Ocean Artemis — reported no damage, Coast Guard officials added.

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SOURCE: CNN, Junko Ogura

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