Troubled USS Montgomery reaches new homeport

The U.S. Navy’s newest Independence-class littoral combat ship USS Montgomery has managed to reach her new homeport after encountering a string of obstacles en route.

The obstacles manifested themselves in engineering failures and collisions.

USS Montgomery started her journey to her designated homeport in San Diego in September after being delivered to the navy three months earlier, in June.

Just three days after its September 10 commissioning ceremony, USS Montgomery became the fifth littoral combat ship to experience some sort of break down within this year.

Montgomery sailors first detected a seawater leak in the hydraulic cooling system and later in the day, the ship experienced a casualty to one of its gas turbine engines.

The ship stopped at Naval Station Mayport to conduct repairs before continuing its journey.

As the ship was getting ready to continue its transit to San Diego it was forced to scramble from port on October 4 in order to avoid hurricane Mathew which was headed toward Mayport. The littoral combat ship collided with a tug in the process and suffered a foot-long crack.

The final accident took place on October 29 while Montgomery was transiting the Panama Canal. The ship collided with one of the walls of the Panama Canal lock suffering damage to the hull.

The Independence-class littoral combat ship USS Montgomery (LCS 8) completed its maiden voyage and arrived at its new homeport of San Diego on November 8.

The U.S. Navy said the ship’s crew completed equipment checks, system tests and crew certification training along the way.

“I couldn’t be more proud of my crew as they’ve conquered every obstacle in their way and thrived,” said Cmdr. Daniel Straub, Montgomery’s commanding officer. “From day one when we departed Mobile, the crew has performed superbly and sailed Montgomery with the expertise, cohesiveness, and precision of an experienced crew. They’ve proven that they can accomplish anything.”