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INLS Big Success in Exercise

Navy NewsStand

Story Number: NNS070214-17
Release Date: 2/14/2007 5:43:00 PM

By Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class (SW) Roosevelt Ulloavaldivieso, Humanitarian Support Over the Shore Command Information Bureau

PUERTO QUETZAL, Guatemala (NNS) -- The first operational use of the Improved Navy Lighterage System (INLS) during the ongoing Humanitarian Support Over the Shore (HSOTS) exercises has fulfilled expectations.

The INLS allowed Navy ships to transport heavy equipment such as tanks and trucks to shore, and cargo such as food, water and equipment parts between ships and from ship to shore in its maiden deployment Feb. 10-14.

“It’s a tremendous success,” said HSOTS Commander Capt. Stanley Weatherald. "INLS is a redesign of the existing Navy lighter (NL) that has been around since World War II. INLS comes in sections that lock together like building blocks to create a variety of floating structures."

The assembly crew commented that its construction was not entirely easy, but was a much-needed improvement to the previous system.

“The NL ramp was very heavy and we had to use a forklift to pull it out and back on, and that was time consuming,” said Information Technician 2nd Class (SW) Dameon Garber, salvage petty officer from Beach Master Unit (BMU) 1. “The INLS ramp is smaller and more efficient and can load and offload vehicles without having to readjust itself."

“The engineering and loading systems worked well during the interface of the roll-on, roll-off discharge facility,” said Weatherald. “There has been a tremendous throughput of equipment.”

INLS is a much longer craft than the old system and allows more equipment to be loaded, and lacks a deep draft, making it easier to offload equipment at one time.

"INLS types allow us to load equipment much faster," said Garber. “By the time we offload one dock, another one is on its way.”

“INLS makes things easier. I think it helps to accomplish our mission faster,” said Boatswain’s Mate 3rd Class Christine A. Mora, a reservist from BMU 1, Team Charlie. “Although it’s a lot of work to set everything up, using INLS really makes a big difference.”

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