Patrol Ships, Naval Academy Conduct Boarding Training

Thursday, January 18, 2007
A Visit, Board, Search and Seizure (VBSS) Sailor assigned to coastal patrol ship USS Hurricane (PC 3) conducts an initial security sweep aboard Yard Patrol Craft 681 (YP 681) while his shipmates board the vessel. YP 681 acted as a non-compliant vessel as part of Hurricane's Advanced Phase Training Exercise, designed to prepare the crew for upcoming deployments. U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Christopher Lussier

Sailors and assets from the U.S. Naval Academy provided a unique training opportunity Jan. 10 and 17 for the crews of USS Thunderbolt (PC 12) and USS Hurricane (PC 3) in the Chesapeake Bay. The exercises were part of Thunderbolt and Hurricane's theater-tailored Advanced Phase Training Exercise, designed to prepare the crews for upcoming deployments.

Patrol Coastal (PC) ships are responsible for conducting Maritime Security Operations to include Maritime Interdiction Operations, as well as visit, board, search and seizures (VBSS) to prevent smuggling, piracy and human trafficking. The trip to Annapolis afforded the PC crews experience navigating in unfamiliar waters, establishing security measures in an unfamiliar port, and conducting actual VBSS operations using the Naval Academy's yard patrol (YP) craft as exercise suspect vessels. "The YP gave our VBSS teams an opportunity to actually experience what it's like to hook and pull a vessel that is underway and exposed to all of the elements," said Thunderbolt Commanding Officer Lt. Scott W. Larson. "We were able to board a real vessel that was moving on water and in conditions that were not ideal," said Lt. j.g. Steve Phillabaum, Thunderbolt’s operations officer. "We are used to practicing on a training platform where weather conditions were non-existent. But here we did it out in the cold just after early morning." The experience was equally beneficial to the Naval Academy Sailors. "Participating with the crew of the PCs is valuable because the junior Sailors aboard the YP's often have no prior deployments or exposure to shipboard operations, and this gives them a taste of actual boarding and underway operations," said Senior Chief Quartermaster (SW) Herbert Kelton of YP Operations. "Training also reconnects and strengthens our relationship with the fleet."

While deployed, the PC crews will be responsible for protecting the waters around oil terminals in the Northern Persian Gulf. This mission is critical because oil revenue from the terminals helps to support fiscal stability in Iraq. "These oil terminals are considered critical economic infrastructure, and one of our primary roles is to conduct security patrols around those oil platforms to protect them from terrorist attacks," said Larson. "Every oil tanker that comes into port has to be swept." The mission must be handled with diplomacy, because many of the ships Larson's Sailors inspect represent the livelihood of the Iraqi people. "We have to remember that the majority of the vessels that we board are merchant vessels, and time is money for them, so we must operate professionally and proficiently," Larson said. Because VBSS is both dangerous and critical to Operation Iraqi Freedom and the broader Global War on Terrorism, the Sailors who volunteer to be VBSS team members undergo a rigorous three-week training program taught by former Navy SEALs (Sea, Air, Land).

Sailors learn proper search techniques, room clearing procedures, close-quarters combat, tactical shooting and various self-defense and survival techniques. On ships such as Thunderbolt and Hurricane, the mission demands Sailors be versatile. With an average crew size of 28, Larson said patrol craft Sailors must be self-motivated hard-chargers. "The crew members wear multiple hats," Larson explained. "I have an (Information Systems Technician) who is also one of my underway officers of the deck. I have a (Damage Controlman) who is also my search and rescue swimmer, and an (Electronics Technician) who also serves as an emergency medical technician; so it is very gratifying for me to see the selflessness that these guys possess." The training assets provided by U.S. Naval Academy Sailors highlight the academy's diverse role in supporting the Global War on Terror. The Academy not only develops future Navy and Marine Corps officers morally, mentally and physically, but also actively supports fleet training and strengthens the U.S. Navy's combat capabilities.

By Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Christopher A. Lussier, U.S. Naval Academy Public Affairs source: NavNews

Maritime Reporter May 2015 Digital Edition
FREE Maritime Reporter Subscription
Latest Maritime News    rss feeds

Contracts

Huawei Bags MCT Submarine Cable Contract

Huawei Marine has signed a system design and construction agreement with a consortium comprising Telekom Malaysia Berhad, Symphony Communication and Telcotech

Solarworld Wants Duties on Chinese Solar Goods in U.S. Extended

German solar manufacturer SolarWorld will apply to the United States for an extension of duties on Chinese panel imports that are due to end this year, weekly Euro am Sonntag said.

Viking Orders 2 Liebherr Cranes

An LR 1300 with super lift equipment and an LR 1160 crawler crane will strengthen the fleet of Viking Cranes. The Tallinn-based company with branch offices

Education/Training

Shanghai Shipyard Won Bid for Two Survey Vessels

Shanghai Shipyard has won bids to build two multipurpose survey vessels for two geological survey institutes. The shipyard is an affiliate of China State Shipbuilding Corporation (CSSC).

USCG Tall Ship Sailing to the Bahamas

The U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Eagle is scheduled to arrive at Berth 14 at Prince George Wharf in Nassau, Bahamas on Thursday, May 28 as part of its 2015 cadet summer training deployment.

Volume Up in Dutch Maritime Technology Sector

The Dutch maritime technology sector has had a good year. Turnover increased by 17%, from EUR 6.4 billion in 2013 to EUR 7.5 billion in 2014. The sector employed 31,680 FTEs, up from 29,361 in 2013.

 
 
Maritime Careers / Shipboard Positions Offshore Oil Pipelines Pod Propulsion Salvage Ship Electronics Ship Repair Shipbuilding / Vessel Construction Sonar Winch
rss | archive | history | articles | privacy | contributors | top maritime news | about us | copyright | maritime magazines
maritime security news | shipbuilding news | maritime industry | shipping news | maritime reporting | workboats news | ship design | maritime business

Time taken: 0.2594 sec (4 req/sec)