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The center gun's compressed air system, which cleansed the bore of sparks and debris each time the gun was fired, was not operating properly.s fire-control officer, Lieutenant Leo Walsh, conducted a briefing to discuss the next day's main battery exercise.
" Scot replied, "We don't have a choice." On 10 April the battleship was visited by commander of the US 2nd Fleet, (then) Vice Admiral Jerome L.
Johnson, and on 13 April Iowa sailed from Norfolk to participate in a fleet exercise in the Caribbean Sea near Puerto Rico.
Skelley claimed that one of the 16 inch shells traveled 23.4 nautical miles (40 km), setting a record for the longest conventional 16 inch (406.4mm) shell ever fired.
Although the shells had been fired without serious incident, Meyer and Petty Officer First Class Dale Eugene Mortensen, gun chief for Turret One, told Skelley that they would no longer participate in his experiments.
The USS Iowa turret explosion occurred in the Number Two 16-inch gun turret of the United States Navy battleship USS Iowa (BB-61) on 19 April 1989. Lehman, who had advocated bringing the Iowa-class ships out of mothballs, did not take the ship out of service, but instructed the leaders of the Atlantic Fleet to ensure that Iowas main gun batteries, including repairs to the main gun turrets' lighting, electrical, powder hoists, and hydraulic systems—75 detailed deficiencies in all.
Skelley asked Turret Two's gun chief, Senior Chief Reggie Ziegler, if he could use Turret Two for his experiments; Ziegler refused.
To assist the GAO, Sandia National Laboratories provided a team of scientists to review the Navy's technical investigation.During the investigation, numerous leaks to the media, later attributed to U. Navy officers and investigators, implied that Hartwig and another sailor, Kendall Truitt, had engaged in a homosexual relationship and that Hartwig had caused the explosion after their relationship had soured. The victims' families, the media, and members of the U. Moosally was led to believe, falsely, that top officials from Naval Sea Systems Command (NAVSEA) had authorized the experiments. Bulkeley personally recommended to the Chief of Naval Operations (CNO), Admiral James Watkins, and the Secretary of the Navy, John Lehman, that Iowa be taken out of service immediately.The concussion from Turret Two's guns shredded Turret One's gun bloomers (the canvas covers at the base of the main gun barrels) and damaged Turret One's electrical system.Dan Meyer said of the shoot that it was "the most frightening experience I have ever had in my life. There was panic." In February the battleship returned to Norfolk.Throughout the night of 18 April, Turret Two's crew conducted a major overhaul of their turret in preparation for a firing exercise scheduled to take place the next day.