The only U.S. submarine
involved in two major accidents
. No lives were lost in either crisis
On December 7, 1921, S-48 was conducting a test dive in Long Island Sound prior to her commissioning. A hatch cover on one of the after ballast tanks was loose, causing the flooding of several compartments and the sinking of the submarine. The S-48 eventually came to rest in 60 feet of water. The crew managed to manuever the sub so that the bow was raised to the surface, and escaped without casualty. The vessel required 10 months of repair, and was finally able to be commissioned on October 14, 1922.
On January 29, 1925, S-48 was caught in a snowstorm off the coast of New Hampshire. The submarine ran aground, but the crew was able to push her off. A few minutes later, the sub found herself grounded once again, and this time she was firmly trapped on the rocks. The battery compartment began to take on water, allowing the formation of lethal chlorine gas. The U.S. Coast Guard was able to rescue the crew with lifeboats.
The sub was recovered from the rocks on February 8, but the damage was too expensive to repair. It was finally repaired about four years later, and S-48 was used as a training submarine during World War II.