The US Naval Surface Forces commander vice-admiral Tom Rowden has ordered engineering stand down and retraining for every littoral combat ship (LCS) crew.
The move comes in the wake of engineering and propulsion casualties faced by four LCSs, USS Freedom (LCS 1), Independence-class USS Coronado (LCS-4), USS Forth Worth (LCS 3), and USS Milwaukee (LCS 5).
The stand down will enable LCS crews to review procedures and standards for their engineering departments.
Rowden said: "Due to the ongoing challenges with littoral combat ships, I ordered an engineering stand down for LCS squadrons and the crews that fall under their command.
"These stands down allowed for time to review, evaluate, and renew our commitment to ensuring our crews are fully prepared to operate these ships safely.”
The Surface Warfare Office School (SWOS) commander has been tasked to retrain LCS sailors who are assigned engineering tasks on-board the ship.
Rowden added: "This training will occur over the next 30 days and will allow the SWOS leadership to review our training programme and determine if other changes need to be made to the training pipeline.”
The SWOS engineering team will develop a level-of-knowledge test and specialised training to guide the LCS engineering crew.
The commanding officer of SWOS is also undertaking a comprehensive LCS engineering review over an anticipated period of 30-60 days, which will be followed by more adjustments made to the engineering training pipeline.
Image: USS Freedom (LCS 1) reaches Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam. Photo: courtesy of US Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Johans Chavarro/Released.