A sailor was reported missing from a U.S. Navy destroyer in the South China Sea early on Tuesday.
The sailor could not be accounted for on the guided-missile destroyer USS Stethem at about 9 a.m. local time Tuesday, according to a statement from the U.S. Navy's Pacific Fleet.
According to an official, the missing sailor had checked in aboard the ship shortly before his disappearance. A Navy official told AP the sailor is a male lieutenant, but his name is being withheld as the search continues.
A search and rescue operation is underway, with the assistance of the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force destroyer Sazanami and helicopter carrier Izumo, said the U.S. Pacific Fleet.