IDF reprimands commanders after Shayetet 13 accidents

After a series of safety incidents, a number of commanders were reprimanded in Shayetet 13.

A joint drill between the IDF’s elite Shayetet 13 navy commandos and US Army Special Forces (photo credit: IDF SPOKESPERSON'S UNIT)
A joint drill between the IDF’s elite Shayetet 13 navy commandos and US Army Special Forces
(photo credit: IDF SPOKESPERSON'S UNIT)

Following the accident of the classified vessels during a naval commando training first published in Maariv two weeks ago, a series of command measures were taken in Shayetet 13.

A combat officer with the rank of major who commanded one of the vessels and was responsible for the professional field in the unit, was removed from his position in the unit and placed in another position outside the naval commando in the naval arm.

In addition to him, the commander of the training, a combat officer in the position of captain, was reprimanded by the commander of Shayetet 13. The other vessel commander, an officer with the rank of lieutenant who was involved in the accident, will not perform command duties in which he is required to command operational vessels for three months until a re-examination of his return to the command of the unit's operational vessels.

More than two weeks ago, as reported in Maariv, during a summarizing training of senior soldiers in the unit, an accident occurred in which there were no casualties, but heavy damage was done to the vessel. During the training, at the time of departure for the training mission, one of the vessels commanded by an officer with the rank of major, who was effectively removed from the unit, collided violently with another vessel.

The operational investigations revealed that there were command and professional errors in the incident. The decision to aggravate the punishment of the officer with the rank of major beyond his being a soldier in the unit is because he is also responsible for the professional field related to the operational vessels in the naval commando. In addition, it emerged that along with professional errors he committed, he also deviated from the professional procedures required for a figure classified as a malfunction and a disciplinary offense. Therefore, it was accordingly decided to aggravate his sentence.

A joint drill between the IDF’s elite Shayetet 13 navy commandos and US Army Special Forces (credit: IDF SPOKESPERSON'S UNIT)A joint drill between the IDF’s elite Shayetet 13 navy commandos and US Army Special Forces (credit: IDF SPOKESPERSON'S UNIT)

As reported in Maariv, after this accident and following a series of safety incidents including two serious incidents in the technical squadron in Shayetet 13, in which a soldier was seriously injured in a fire in one of the vessels during routine care and in another incident, a female soldier's finger was cut off, it was decided to stop training for a week in order to study and draw lessons in the areas of safety and routine in the elite unit.

In addition to the command investigation, a Military Police investigation is being conducted on these incidents. When this is over, it appears that measures on the command level will be taken in these cases as well. The IDF Spokespersons Unit said in response that "following the vessel accident in Squadron 13, an investigation was conducted, the conclusions of which included a recommendation to take measures on the command level against those involved."