The seven U.S. sailors who were unaccounted for after the USS Fitzgerald, a Navy destroyer collided with a cargo ship off the coast of Japan on Saturday have been found dead.

“As search and rescue crews gained access to the spaces that were damaged during the collision this morning, the missing Sailors were located in the flooded berthing compartments. They are currently being transferred to Naval Hospital Yokosuka where they will be identified.”

– US Navy 7th Fleet Public Affairs

The rest of the statement read as follows

“The families are being notified and being provided the support they need during this difficult time. The names of the Sailors will be released after all notifications are made.”

The U.S. Navy Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Fitzgerald returns to Fleet Activities (FLEACT) Yokosuka following a collision with a merchant vessel while operating southwest of Yokosuka, Japan in photo received June 17, 2017. Courtesy of U.S. Navy/Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Peter Burghart/Handout via REUTERS

The sailors went missing after the Saturday morning collision. The ship was towed to Naval Base Yokosuka and the sailors bodies were found when rescue workers gained access to spaces of the ship that were damaged in the collision.

The incident between the USS Fitzgerald and the merchant vessel happened at about 2:30 a.m. local time on Friday, about 56 nautical miles southwest of Yokosuka, Japan, the U.S. 7th Fleet said in a news release. The other ship involved in the incident was the Philippine-flagged merchant ship ACX Crystal.

This is breaking news and will continued to be updated.


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