(Pictured: The first Littoral Combat Ship - Freedom - was christened in September 2006 at Marinette Marine Shipyard
The Navy issued a stop work order Jan. 12 to Lockheed Martin Corp. Maritime Systems & Sensors unit, Moorestown, N.J., for the construction of the third Littoral Combat Ship (LCS). This stop work order will take effect immediately and is for a period of 90 days.
The stop work order was issued because of significant cost increases currently being experienced with the construction of LCS-1 and LCS-3, under construction by Lockheed Martin.
“I determined that at this point in time it was critical to stop work on LCS-3 to assess the LCS program and ensure we understand the program’s cost and management processes before we move forward. It is essential that we complete LCS 1 and get it to sea so we can evaluate this new ship design” said Secretary of the Navy Donald Winter.
The Navy is working closely with the contractor to identify the root cause of the costs growth. The Navy is reviewing the overall acquisition strategy for the LCS program and is working closely with the contractors to keep this program on track.
The contract for LCS-3 was awarded June 26, 2006, for $197.6 million, and the ship is being constructed at Bollinger Shipyard, Lockport, La.
"The Littoral Combat Ship program
remains of critical importance to our Navy. With its great speed and interchangeable warfighting modules, the ship will provide unprecedented flexibility, allowing us to combat almost any specific threat -- from enemy mines to submarines to even pirates. It will help us defend our nation not just in the deep blue, but up close in the coastal regions of the world where our enemies like to hide and where so many of our friends and partners strive to prosper," said Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Mike Mullen.
The Navy is committed to the LCS class ship as it remains the cornerstone of the future fleet by providing critical capability.