MANILA The U.S. Navy said a minesweeper that ran aground on a coral reef in the Philippines was using a faulty map that misplaced the location of the marine sanctuary.
All 79 officers and crew of the USS Guardian have left the ship after it struck the reef Thursday. The Navy’s Pacific Fleet said Saturday that its ships along with several support vessels continue to conduct salvage operations that minimize environmental effects to the reef.
The Navy said digital nautical charts contained inaccurate data and may have been a factor in the Guardian’s grounding.
Navigator of the Navy Rear Adm. Jonathan White released precautionary guidance to all Pacific Fleet ships, saying that “initial review of navigation data indicates an error in the location of Tubbataha Reef” in the Philippines.