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VCNS Visits USS New Orleans

Navy NewsStand

Story Number: NNS071019-05
Release Date: 10/19/2007 11:57:00 AM

By Electronics Technician 2nd Class Webster G. Carlin, USS New Orleans Public Affairs

SAN DIEGO (NNS) -- USS New Orleans (LPD 18) welcomed aboard the Indian Navy Vice Chief of Naval Staff (VCNS) for a tour, Oct. 14, as a part of his visit to the International Seapower Symposium (ISS) 2007.

Vice Adm. Nirmal Kumar Verma, VCNS, was escorted by Rear Adm. Mark W. Balmert, commander, Expeditionary Strike Group 3, and Cmdr. John B. Skillman, commanding officer of New Orleans to the ship's wardroom for an overview of the advanced technology of the LPD 17 class amphibious transport dock.

“The LPD 17 class has increased command and control capabilities over the LPD 4 class,” commented Rear Adm. Balmert during the luncheon.

Verma was briefed on the capabilities of New Orleans, asking questions about vehicle loading and unloading, aircraft support, combat systems and manning capabilities.

After the luncheon, Skillman escorted Verma on a tour of New Orleans.

“The ship is wonderfully designed with flexibility for what are now not dreamed of upgrades over its 40-year service life specifically with respect to fiber optic backbone and electrical distribution,” explained Skillman as he led Verma through the ship.

At the conclusion of the tour, Verma commented “there are more capabilities than I expected for this platform.”

ISS 2007 is happening this month in Newport, R.I., and will gather more than 100 maritime service leaders from around the world to discuss maritime cooperation.

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