The captain of an Indian merchant ship struck by a Navy missile said he was told by the U.S. Navy his vessel was out of a restricted training area before it was accidentally hit, killing a crewman.
"I was being guided by the missile facility," said Capt. P.M. Mirchan-dani, who spoke with reporters Tuesday after bringing the 550-foot Jag Vivek into port here for repairs."I heard a noise and saw splinters flying out onto the deck," the 34-year-old captain said of Monday's incident, which occurred when his ship was about 80 miles north-northwest of the island of Kauai.
A Navy spokesman, Lt. Cmdr. Gary Shrout, said Mirchandani's contention that his ship was being guided by Navy controllers at the Pacific Missile Range was under investigation.
"Everybody has a little tiny piece of the puzzle and it's going to take a while to put all these pieces together and figure out just what happened," Shrout said.
Attorney Leondard Alcantara, representing the Jag Vivek's owners, said controllers at the missile range told the ship about 8 a.m. Monday that it was entering a restricted area.