An investigation by the Navy has concluded three retired admirals deserve blame for the fuel leak at the Red Hill Fuel Facility that contaminated the water of thousands of residents.
Civil Beat reports letters of reprimand have been sent to retired Rear Adm. Peter Stamatopoulos, retired Rear Adm. John Korka and retired Rear Adm. Timothy Kott for their roles in the mishap.
“What happened was not acceptable and the Department of the Navy will continue to take every action to identify and remedy this issue,” Navy Secretary Carlos Del Toro said in a statement. “Taking accountability is a step in restoring the trust in our relationship with the community.”
U.S. Senator Mazie Hirono said the censures are an important step, but she told Hawaii Public Radio a bigger step would be “The Navy to address the systemic command and control failures, and a lack of requisite attention to infrastructure, that caused this disaster to happen.”
Next month, the Navy is expected to remove 104 million gallons of fuel from the WWII facility that contaminated the drinking wells.
The Censure letters go on the Rear Admirals record, but will not result in any demotion. Military authorities say the letters are a step towards internal accountability, reports Civil Beat.
The drinking water contaminated is part of a system that serves 93,000 people.
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