Large harbor tugs assist USS Kitty Hawk (CV 63) as she returns to her forward deployed base after conducting sea trials. U.S. Navy photo by Mass communication Specialist 2nd Class Nardelito Gervacio
From Kitty Hawk Public Affairs
USS Kitty Hawk (CV 63) returned to Yokosuka on May 7 after conducting sea trials in the Tokyo Bay.
The carrier was at sea for three days testing its shipboard systems and equipment following a four-month selected restrictive availability (SRA) maintenance period.
Sailors also participated in a number of drills and exercises, such as mass casualty and man overboard drills.
“Sea trials give us a better judgment of where the ship is at and where the crew’s training level is that you can’t find by sitting next to the pier,” said Machinist’s Mate 1st Class (SW/AW) Chad Hemric, Safety Department leading petty officer. “[Sea trials] help us find out if the ship is capable of performing its job.”
Sea trials provided the crew with a refresher course on at-sea operations after being in port since December. Many drills, such as general quarters, are better performed in an at-sea environment due to both physical and operational limitations while in port.
While in port, the crew will address discrepancies encountered during sea trials to prepare the ship for an extended deployment.
Carrier Air Wing 5 Sailors will join the Kitty Hawk crew on a short deployment to earn the carrier’s flight operations qualifications prior to departing for the summer deployment.