FRIDAY FOTO (October 22, 2021)

October 23, 2021 at 12:53 am Leave a comment

Preparation is Everything.

(U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Aaron Lau)

Firefighters and Sailors, assigned to the littoral combat ship USS Detroit (LCS 7), respond to simulated fires during a fire drill aboard the ship on October 6, 2021. The Detroit is homeported at Naval Station Mayport, Florida.

We thought the lighting and composition of this photo is amazing. Please click on the photo to enlarge the image.

The U.S. Navy takes fires very seriously. At Naval Service Training Command in Great Lakes, Illinois — the Navy’s only enlisted boot camp – recruits are trained in firefighting as one of five basic competencies, which also include: Damage control, watch standing, seamanship and small-arms handling/marksmanship.

The importance of firefighting aboard ship was driven home in July 2020 when the amphibious assault ship, USS Bonhomme Richard, caught fire beside the pier at Naval Base San Diego, California and burned for four days. No lives were lost but the 22-year-old Bonhomme Richard (LHD 6) was a total loss. It had been in San Diego since 2018 undergoing more than $250 million in modernization improvements. When the fire was finally out and the damage assessed, Navy leaders determined it was too costly to rebuild and decided to scrap the huge vessel.

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Latest Developments in Bonhomme Richard fire investigation.

The Navy issued two devastating reports October 20, following a lengthy investigation into the causes and response to the fire. The suspected arson fire that destroyed the $2 billion combat ship spread uncontrollably because of a cascading chain of errors including insufficient training of the crew, an accumulation of combustible repair and maintenance materials, and most of the ship’s fire stations being out of commission at the time of the fire.

There were four categories of causal factors that allowed for the accumulation of significant risk and led to an ineffective fire response, according to the Navy. They included the material condition of the ship, the training and readiness of the ship’s crew, the integration between the ship and supporting shore-based firefighting organizations, and lastly, the oversight by commanders across multiple organizations. The investigation concluded “a lack of familiarity with requirements and procedural noncompliance at multiple levels of command” contributed to the loss of ship.

“The loss of this ship was completely preventable,” said the Navy’s Number 2 commander, Vice Chief of Naval Operations Admiral Bill Lescher.

The investigation also found that a raft of systemic reforms put in place following a 2012 shipyard fire in Maine that destroyed the submarine USS Miami were not followed, helping fuel Bonhomme Richard’s demise in the process, according to the Navy Times.

Additionally, the report recognized the “bravery, ingenuity, and resourcefulness in the actions of Sailors across the San Diego waterfront and others who had a role in the response,” and identified 10 meritorious performance recommendations for actions taken during the firefighting efforts, SEAPOWER reported.

The cascade of errors and breakdowns involved 36 Navy personnel, the investigation found, including the commander of the Bonhomme Richard and five admirals, who failed to maintain the ship, ensure adequate training, provide shore support, or carry out proper oversight, according to CNN.

The preliminary hearing for the crew member charged with starting the fire, who has not been identified, is scheduled for November 17.

Entry filed under: amphibious warfare, FRIDAY FOTO, Lessons Learned, National Security and Defense, Skills and Training, Technology, U.S. Navy, Weaponry and Equipment. Tags: , , , , , , , , , .

FRIDAY FOTO (October 15, 2021) ARCTIC NATION: U.S. Ice Breaker Circumnavigating North America; Canadian Coast Guard showing Royal Navy the Ropes in the Arctic

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