U.S. Navy Destroyer Collision Japan
The damaged USS Fitzgerald is pictured off Shimoda, Shizuoka prefecture, Japan, after the Navy destroyer collided with a merchant ship.

YOKOSUKA, Japan — The U.S. Navy says sailors from the destroyer USS Dewey are helping crew stabilize the damaged USS Fitzgerald after it collided with a container ship off the coast of Japan before dawn Saturday, leaving seven sailors missing.

Family members are frantically seeking news as the ship slowly headed toward its home base at Yokosuka, south of Tokyo. At least three crew members including the commander have been injured.

Japanese coast guard spokesman Yoshihito Nakamura says rescuers are searching for the seven sailors thought to have been thrown into the sea or possibly trapped inside damaged sections of the destroyer. No one on the container ship has been reported injured.

The Navy’s 7th Fleet says flooding is stabilized and sailors from the Dewey came aboard to help with damage control.

In this photo, released by Japan's Defense Ministry, an injured USS Fitzgerald personnel is carried by U.S. military personnel (left) and Japanese Maritime Self-Defense Force members (right) upon arriving to the U.S. Naval base in Japan.