US Navy establishes forward-deployed readiness command in Japan

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The US Navy announced it has officially established the Commander, Naval Surface Group Western Pacific (CNSG WP), which will be in charge of overseeing the Forward Deployed Naval Force Japan (FDNF-J) surface ship maintenance, training, and certification.

In October 2017, US Pacific Fleet established a Detachment, Naval Surface Group Western Pacific as an interim organization to protect the balance between operations, maintenance, and training requirements.

Now a permanent command, the name of this organization has changed to CNSG WP. It will serve as Commander, Naval Surface Force, US Pacific Fleet’s (CNSP) executive agent responsible to oversee surface ship maintenance and training.

This new command will manage ship activities in the maintenance and basic phase, enforce the readiness assessment and certification process within those phases and closely coordinate with the ship’s operational commander until a ship is certified Basic Phase Complete (BPC) by CNSP.

Initially established under US Pacific Fleet, the command led by Capt. Rich Dromerhauser now reports to CNSP, Vice Adm. Rich Brown.

“Rebuilding readiness is my top priority,” said Brown. “CNSG WP is one critical step in the process.”

As executive agent for CNSP, Dromerhauser will ensure every FDNF-J ship receives the necessary maintenance, and training before recommending to CNSP whether a ship is ready or requires additional training. CNSP will submit a message to C7F that the ship is certified BPC and ready for operational tasking.

“My team will be focused on enabling ships to achieve certified levels of readiness and a demonstrated ability to safely conduct operations at sea after extended periods of maintenance and modernization efforts,” said Dromerhauser, inaugural commander of CNSG WP. “We owe it to our Sailors to provide them the focused training, system maintenance, and modernization that builds competence and confidence in themselves, their Shipmates, and their equipment.”

One of the goals of establishing CNSG WP is to provide a standard, predictable path for every FDNF-J ship to accomplish, protect, and synchronize maintenance and training to meet operational commitments. Since the initial announcement of CNSG WP, Dromerhauser has worked diligently to improve the efficacy and on time completion of maintenance and training.

“What Captain Dromerhauser and his team have been doing these past few months has greatly helped us assess and address readiness challenges in FDNF-J,” said Brown. “He and the CNSG WP team will play a critical role in building readiness – ensuring our ships are fully certified – today, and well into the future.”

In addition to the standup of CNSG WP, CNSP is implementing several other actions to improve safety and readiness of the surface fleet and addressing uses identified in the Comprehensive Review. These actions include: increased ship handling simulator training during the Basic and Advanced Division Officer Courses, mariner assessments during the Prospective Commanding Officer Course, a Junior Officer of the Deck Course, Bridge Resource Management Workshops, and additional OOD classroom and simulator training.

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