While conducting maritime security operations (MSO) in the Arabian Gulf, March 6, USS Ardent (MCM 12) responded to a distress call by an Iraqi-owned commercial vessel.
Ardent arrived on scene after the crew of Motor Vessel Gulf Queen reported via bridge-to-bridge radio that the vessel was dead-in-the-water with no topside or navigational lighting visible. The Avenger-class mine countermeasure ship deployed two rescue and assistance teams (RNA), which performed a security sweep of the crippled ship and conducted an assessment of its electrical and engineering conditions as well as the welfare of the crew.
According to Engineman 2nd Class (SW) John Porter, Gulf Queen's engine equipment was extremely degraded.
“The ship had no means to repair itself due to the lack of personnel, technical knowledge and few spare parts,” said Porter, who hails from Salina , Kan.