U.S. Navy Fires Warship Commander After 4000 Gallon Fuel Spill

us navy captain fired after oil spill
Capt. Erica L. Hoffmann, (right), takes command of the guided-missile cruiser USS Philippine Sea in Mayport, Fla., April 26, 2019. ANDERSON BRANCH/U.S. NAVY

The commanding officer of the U.S. Navy warship, USS Philippine Sea that spilled about 4000 gallons of fuel into a Virginia river earlier this month was relieved from her job.

Naval sources did not specify why Captain Erica L. Hoffmann was fired – but simply said it was due to “a loss of confidence,” the Navy Times reported.

“Many factors weigh into a decision to relieve a commanding officer due to loss of confidence,” Naval Surface Force Atlantic spokeswoman Lt Cmdr Richlyn Ivey told the Navy Times.



The USS Philippine Sea was at a pier at the Naval Weapons Station in Virginia, when 4,000 gallons of diesel spilled into the river, Ted Brown, a U.S. Fleet Forces Command Environmental Public Affairs Officer said. Most of the diesel was contained, and officials began cleanup immediately.

Just a little more than a week after the incident, Hoffmann was fired.

Navy officials have since launched an investigation into the cause of the spill.

Notably, Captain Hoffmann took command of USS Philippine Sea in April 2019.

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