Oil tanker collides with US Navy ship


An oil tanker has collided with a US Navy ship near the Strait of Hormuz today but no one was hurt and shipping traffic in the waterway, through which 40 percent of the world's seaborne oil exports pass, has not been affected.

"Both vessels are okay and the Strait of Hormuz is not closed, and business is as usual there," an Oman coast guard official said, declining to be named under briefing rules.

The Bahrain-based US Fifth Fleet said the Panamanian-flagged, Japanese-owned bulk oil tanker M/V Otowasan collided with the USS Porter, a guided-missile destroyer, in the early hours of this morning.

The navy vessel remained able to operate under its own power after the collision, which was not combat-related, the statement added, without elaborating on how the accident happened. An investigation is underway.

Tensions have risen in the Gulf this year as Iran has threatened to close the strait to international shipping if its dispute with the United States over its nuclear programme escalates. Washington says it maintains naval forces in the Gulf to ensure security in the region.

The oil tanker, owned by Japan's Mitsui OSK, was bound for the United Arab Emirates port of Fujairah from Mesaieed in Qatar, according to ship tracking websites.