The Naval Submarine Fire Caused by a Repairman Wanting To Get Out of Work Early

At 5:41 p.m. on May 23, 2012, fire crews were called to the USS Miami while the submarine was being overhauled at the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard in Kittery, Maine. At the time, the sub was in its second month of a scheduled 20-month maintenance cycle, indicating that it was going through an extensive overhaul. It took firefighters 12 hours to extinguish the fire. Fortunately, there were no deaths, but one crew member and 7 firefighters were injured. Initially, the U.S. Navy reported that the fire started when an industrial vacuum cleaner sucked up a heat source that ignited debris inside the vacuum. However, further investigation revealed that civilian painter and sandblaster Casey Fury intentionally started the fire so he could get out of work early. He was indicted on two counts of arson and was sentenced to 17 years in federal prison and ordered to pay $400 million in restitution. Because it was estimated that it would take nearly $700 million to make the necessary repairs, the submarine was officially decommissioned and disposed of via the nuclear Ship-Submarine Recycling Program.