USS Mount Whitney Completes Maintenance

USS Mount Whitney Completes Maintenance

The U.S. 6th Fleet flag ship USS Mount Whitney (LCC 20) completed a two-month maintenance period at San Giorgio del Porto shipyard, April 15.

After nearly 60 days of engineering upgrades and extensive steel replacement on the main super-structure, Mount Whitney got underway to conduct sea trials, a step toward certifying as a mission ready platform.

Regularly scheduled maintenance and upkeep is critical to maintaining a ship’s warfighting capabilities and prolonging the life-cycle of the ship.

Military Sealift Command civil service mariner Chief Mate Kevin Farrin said San Giorgio del Porto’s repair work was well managed and on par with any stateside shipyard.

“My expectations for an on-budget and timely execution of a large project like this were fully met by the San Giorgio team,” said Farrin.

Putting Mount Whitney through her paces is an all-hands evolution. The ship is being tested from top to bottom, ensuring that the engineering improvements and system upgrades are functioning properly. The crew’s ability to perform maintenance and get back to sea in a timely manner also demonstrates the Chief of Naval Operations’ strategic guidance of “Warfighting First, Operate Forward and Be Ready.”

High-speed rudder checks, cycling engine room systems and calibrating engineering equipment are all planned for the short underway.

Mount Whitney’s completion of maintenance at San Giorgio del Porto was not the only success story during the ship’s time in Genoa.

During their in-port period, Sailors assigned to Mount Whitney took the opportunity to give back to the residents of Genoa through three community engagement projects.

“I think the community engagement projects have been very successful,” said Cryptologic Technician (Technical) 1st Class Jacob Wallace. “It is nice knowing that what we did will have a lasting effect on our Sailors and the city of Genoa.”

In total, Sailors stationed on board Mount Whitney volunteered 600 hours of their time during the projects in the cities of Recco and Genoa.

“The partnerships we are making now will have lasting effects long after we leave,” said Wallace.

Mount Whitney, homeported in Gaeta, Italy, operates with a combined crew of U.S. Sailors and Military Sealift Command civil service mariners. The civil service mariners perform navigation, deck, engineering, laundry and galley service operations, while military personnel aboard support communications, weapons systems and security.

Naval Today Staff, April 19, 2013; Image: US Navy