The US Navy is failing to prepare recruits for madness of shipborne life - lessons for RN?

#1
#2
unless you've served alongside the USN, in a USN ship, you can never understand how chronically sleep deprived they all are. I mean, staying awake for 30+ hours is not unusual.

Even in the deepest days of "sleep is for the weak" as a junior watchkeeper, I slept everyday, and generally got at least 5+ hours per 24 hours.

Listen to this "This American Life" episode, and continue to be horrified...

Human Error in Volatile Situations - This American Life
 
#4
Might explain why their ships keep bumping into things, then...?
It is one of the reasons, alongside a utterly mad training and retention system that crams in upto 30 junior Officers per ship in order to sustain 4 - 5 senior Lt or junior Lt Cdr USN.

- this is a video doing the rounds in the USN a few years ago. It's funny because it's true. (BUPERs = Bureau of Personnel).
 
#5
Might explain why their ships keep bumping into things, then...?
Remedial training at MWS Mercury building perhaps?

Seeing as international students regular transit through.
 
#6
unless you've served alongside the USN, in a USN ship, you can never understand how chronically sleep deprived they all are. I mean, staying awake for 30+ hours is not unusual.
Is there any reason for this, or is it cultural?
 
#7
unless you've served alongside the USN, in a USN ship, you can never understand how chronically sleep deprived they all are. I mean, staying awake for 30+ hours is not unusual.
Is there any reason for this, or is it cultural?
I think, in the main, its cultural. Not helped by the fact that are generations of senior SWOs who've grown up like that. Add in a forced distribution promotion system, where only those ranked #1 in a peer group get to promote*, and you have a heady brew.



*as you'd expect, this is extensively gamed.


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#8
Seems myopic to have lots of shiny kit then neglect the human element. As @Yokel asks, is it cultural?

On reading the article I did think nothing has changed in the last few centuries.

'From my time onboard the USS Vella Gulf (CG-72), spanning 2010 to 2013, we lost more sailors to nerves, pressure, and ineptitude than I can actually count. We called the ship “Cell Block 72,” and it sure felt like a floating prison. That’s exactly how I describe serving in the Navy to my friends who’ve asked me about it.'

“Being in a ship is like being in jail, with the chance of being drowned.”
Samuel Johnson
 
#9
The culture between HM forces and the US cannot really be compared, totally different mentality across the board. My take on the article is that it was written by a sailor who had lots of flaws to point out from his personal perspective, but not really much to contribute to fixing the issues. The internet has given everyone a voice, and it seems this is his way of pointing out he didn’t enjoy his time in the service.
 
#10
I think, in the main, its cultural. Not helped by the fact that are generations of senior SWOs who've grown up like that. Add in a forced distribution promotion system, where only those ranked #1 in a peer group get to promote*, and you have a heady brew.



*as you'd expect, this is extensively gamed.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
I meant to tag you with a @ to draw your attention to another thread I started as I think it is relevent to defence.

https://www.arrse.co.uk/community/threads/how-systems-create-their-own-behaviour.272894/
 
#11
The culture between HM forces and the US cannot really be compared, totally different mentality across the board. My take on the article is that it was written by a sailor who had lots of flaws to point out from his personal perspective, but not really much to contribute to fixing the issues. The internet has given everyone a voice, and it seems this is his way of pointing out he didn’t enjoy his time in the service.
There are USN 4* who can't and won't fix this...


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#12
unless you've served alongside the USN, in a USN ship, you can never understand how chronically sleep deprived they all are. I mean, staying awake for 30+ hours is not unusual.

Even in the deepest days of "sleep is for the weak" as a junior watchkeeper, I slept everyday, and generally got at least 5+ hours per 24 hours.

Listen to this "This American Life" episode, and continue to be horrified...

Human Error in Volatile Situations - This American Life
Seems to be a trait in the us military in general.

Who can forget a certain chief CJ2 demanding that his people worked until they could work no longer and get by on the minimum amount of sleep.

That mong was expecting 18 hours plus a day of his guys for a year.

Same in WW2 though, they kept their guys in the front line for months at a time until they were a spent force rather than rotate them out.

When the USMC surged into southern Afghanistan they wanted their troops in tents as corimec was going to make them soft. (Forgetting that the ballistic protection from a 107mm rocket is significantly better than 2mm of canvas.

Generally our leadership gets it, but I did see a few buying into the US belief system.

Who can forget a certain British general who introduced the ban on the two can rule whilst his CP team stood watch outside Gandamack every Thursday night whilst he went on the lash or the RE GEO guy taken up to the Pansher valley to get photos of him fly fishing.
 
#13
Yes it's cultural. A colleague of mine is ex-USN and has shared plenty of horror stories of overwork and sleep deprivation from his flat top cruises. He's been out 5+ years but both his sleep pattern and nerves are still erratic. It affects his work quite badly sometimes.
 
#14
I worked in Baghdad CIOC with a OF5 J2 type who was averaging 20hr days for a year. Their body was in the process of total shutdown as a result - she was wearing arctic gear in Baghdad in May because she'd lost the physical ability to determine temperature accurately. The worst thing, she was a reservist compulsorily mobilised from retirement to fill manpower shortages and had no benefit in working hard, or at all.
 

Auld-Yin

ADC
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#16
Seems to me it is not so much a case of the sailors not bring prepared for life at sea, more a case of the officer cadre not bring prepared, and able, to work their rafts.
 
#17
#18
much more nuanced that these days, and has been so for quite a while.

There are "defects" and "defects", but more importantly, there is one golden path for SWOs. The quip you should be using is "ducks pick ducks"...
 

ugly

LE
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#20

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