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USS Cowpens Completes Sea Trials

Navy Newsstand

Story Number: NNS040505-03

Release Date: 5/5/2004 4:07:00 PM

By Lt. j.g. Sam J. Barris, USS Cowpens Public Affairs

YOKOSUKA, Japan (NNS) -- USS Cowpens (CG 63) returned to Yokosuka, Japan, April 14 after almost two weeks of sea trials.

Sea trails consist of operational tests, maintenance, drills and an under way period. This under way period marked the official end of Cowpens' nine-week dry-docking selected restricted availability period.

All facets of shipboard operation were subjected to rigorous testing during the trials in order to verify both the ship's material condition and the proficiency of her crew.

Throughout every space on the 567-foot-long Ticonderoga-class guided-missile cruiser, the crew of the "Thundering Herd" was out in force, cleaning passageways, organizing lockers and restoring their equipment to full battle efficiency.

In the heat and noise of the engineering spaces, engineers worked hard running evolutions, casualty control drills and main space fire drills. Sailors completed operational tests and conducted routine maintenance on the ship's four main engines and countless pieces of support equipment.

Cowpens' 5-inch and CIWS [close-in weapon system] gun mounts were operational and tested for the first time this year. Combat systems and weapons department personnel tested the ship's defensive systems and ran numerous combat scenarios, preparing for whatever missions and challenges that might await the crew over the next year.

On the bridge, experienced watch standers regained their at-sea qualifications and assisted in the training of new shipmates, many of whom were getting their first experience of life at sea.

"After so long in port, it's quite exciting watching the crew once again flex the muscles of their mighty war engine," said Electrician's Mate 2nd Class Tamfu Fomuso.

Cowpens is serving as part of the USS Kitty Hawk (CV 63) Strike Group, in the Forward Deployed Naval Forces operating from Yokosuka, Japan.

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