USS Elrod Hones Boarding Skills with Tunisian Sailors

USS Elrod Rounds Off Visit to Mauritania

USS Elrod (FFG 55), the U.S. Navy’s Oliver Hazard Perry-class frigate wrapped up her visit to Mauritania and headed out to sea on February 10.

The visit was a perfect opportunity for Elrod sailors to work side by side with their colleagues from the Tunisian Navy. The crews teamed up in a passing exercise (PASSEX), exchanging techniques in critical warfare areas such as damage control, expeditionary medical care and boarding operations.

The PASSEX saw the two navies engage in a simulated boarding operation. The Tunisian navy’s visit, board, search and seizure (VBSS) team came aboard the US navy ship, which played the role of a shipping vessel, where the US crew played the role of smugglers.

Chief Gunner’s Mate Rodger Clay, a member of Elrod’s VBSS team said: “The Tunisian team searched each Sailor and certain areas of the ship that were part of the scenario. After finding contraband, they apprehended the suspected smugglers and ended the scenario.”

During the visit, USS Elrod welcomed numerous ambassadors, Tunisian legislators and defense attaches onboard.

Within its scheduled deployment to the U.S. 6th Fleet area of responsibility, Elrod dropped anchor in Nouakchott, Mauritania for a port visit at the end of January. The visit was aimed at building up relations with the regional leaders and bolstering maritime partnerships.

USS Elrod set sail on a six-month deployment on 14th of January, during which the ship will conduct several exercises with African nations and security operations.

Length 138 m
Beam 14 m
Draught 6.7m
Displacement 4,100 long tons
Speed 26 knots
Complement 15 officers and 190 enlisted
Range 5,000 nmi (9,300 km; 5,800 mi) at 18 knots (21 mph; 33 km/h)
Status Active, Due for Decommissioning

Naval Today Staff, February 12, 2014; Image: Wikimedia