USS Tortuga Arrives to Sasebo for Hull Swap

Monday, April 03, 2006
USS Tortuga (LSD 46) arrived on March 31 after completing an 11,000-mile voyage across two oceans and transiting the Panama Canal for a scheduled hull swap with USS Fort McHenry (LSD 43). Tortuga is the sixth Whidbey Island-class ship and will join Commander, Task Force (CTF) 76, serving as an integral part of the Navy’s Forward Deployed Expeditionary Strike Group (FD-ESG) and Forward Deployed Amphibious Ready Group (ARG). “We are very excited to be here in Sasebo. For many of us, this is our first time in Japan,” said Cmdr. Mark H. Scovill, Tortuga’s commanding officer. “Along with conducting the hull swap, the crew has a great opportunity to experience the Japanese culture.” Hull swap, or ship rotation, is part of the Navy’s long-range plan to routinely replace older ships assigned to the Navy’s Forward Deployed Naval Force (FDNF) with newer or more capable ships. Forward deployment of Tortuga ensures the ability of Commander, U.S. 7th Fleet to fulfill the U.S. government’s commitment to the defense of Japan and the maintenance of international peace and security in the Far East in support of the Treaty of Mutual Cooperation and Security. In addition, Tortuga arrived with four Assault Craft Unit (ACU) 5 Western Pacific Detachment LCACs (Landing Craft Air Cushion) in the well deck to replace three older LCACs already here and adding an additional LCAC to ACU 5’s inventory. After completion of the hull swap, Fort McHenry will return to the United States with three of the older LCACs. Commissioned in 1990, the dock landing ship has conducted numerous multinational bilateral training exercises, such as Dynamic Mix ’98 in the Mediterranean, Sardinia ’98 off the coast of Sardinia and UNITAS 2000 off the coast of Argentina. It deployed in 1996 to Liberia and in 2000 served as a maritime platform for Navy Construction Battalion and Marine Corps engineering personnel who helped the Venezuelans clear roads along the flood-ravaged Venezuelan coastline. Recently, Tortuga conducted emergent relief operations in support of Hurricane Katrina humanitarian assistance in September 2005. “This hull swap is a win-win process for everyone involved. The Sailors and their families stationed here in Sasebo stay here and are not uprooted, while at the same time the Forward Deployed Naval Forces get a newer and more capable ship,” said Cmdr. Michael T. Talaga, Fort McHenry’s commanding officer. “Tortuga’s distinguished reputation and history will continue the legacy left behind by the Fort McHenry.” Dock landing ships support a variety of missions to include amphibious assault operations to humanitarian relief operations. Fort McHenry and Tortuga can carry and operate helicopters, conventional landing crafts and LCACs, providing support as a sea base to its amphibious forces for an extended period of time. Fort McHenry will depart Sasebo in April 2006 and return to Little Creek, Va., where it will be homeported. The Navy’s first hull swap was conducted here in 1999 when USS Juneau (LPD 10) replaced the USS Dubuque (LPD 8). In 2000, USS Essex (LHD 2), the current flagship of the Forward Deployed Amphibious Ready Group, replaced the USS Belleau Wood (LHA 3). And in 2002, USS Harpers Ferry (LSD 49) replaced the USS Germantown (LSD 42). The Forward Deployed ARG is part of Task Force 76, the Navy's only forward-deployed amphibious force, which is headquartered at White Beach Naval Facility, Okinawa, Japan, with an operating detachment in Sasebo, Japan.

Maritime Today


The Maritime Industry's original and most viewed E-News Service

Maritime Reporter July 2016 Digital Edition
FREE Maritime Reporter Subscription
Latest Maritime News    rss feeds

Navy

This Day In Naval History - July 29

1846 - During the Mexican-American War, a detachment of Marines and Sailors, led by Arm. Col. John C. Fremont from the sloop USS Cyane, commanded by Cmdr. Samuel F.

Det Norske to Restore Production at Alvheim after Leak

Norwegian oil firm Det norske said it expected to reach full production at its Alvheim FPSO (floating storage, offloading and producing unit) overnight after a leak,

This Day In Naval History: July 28

1861 - During the Civil War, the frigate, USS St. Lawrence, spots a schooner flying English colors and gave chase. Some four hours later, as she is overhauling the schooner,

 
 
Maritime Security Maritime Standards Naval Architecture Navigation Pipelines Pod Propulsion 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: 0.0792 sec (13 req/sec)