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NAVSUP Plays Vital Role in Haiti Relief Effort

Navy NewsStand

Story Number: NNS100129-15
Release Date: 1/29/2010 4:05:00 PM

By Tim Christmann, Naval Supply Systems Command Public Affairs

MECHANICSBURG, Pa. (NNS) -- Shortly after the 7.0 magnitude earthquake devastated Haiti Jan. 12, Naval Supply Systems Command (NAVSUP) military and civilian personnel rapidly mobilized to bring vital supplies to thousands of people in need.

"We continue to bring supplies to Haiti daily as part of Operation Unified Response, and we won't stop until the job is done," said Capt. Joyce Robinson, commanding officer of NAVSUP's Fleet and Industrial Supply Center (FISC) in Jacksonville, Fla. "We responded quickly to the tragedy because of our effective planning, good lines of communication throughout the NAVSUP Enterprise, and a great team of people who know how to make things happen."

NAVSUP personnel used the global logistics support network to order, load, and deliver supplies to the devastated area. The orchestrated response is part of the Global Logistics Support Strategy, a command and control function that incorporates logistics planning, operational logistics support, and mission specific concepts of operations.

The strategy is effective because it integrates Navy's logistics capabilities with the logistics capabilities of the other services, industry, and allies to create a unity of effort among multiple providers. It was tested successfully in crisis response scenarios ashore and has been invaluable in Operation Unified Response.

Since the operation began, NAVSUP component commands – including Naval Inventory Control Point (NAVICP); Commander, Fleet & Industrial Support Centers (COMFISCS); Navy Exchange Service Command (NEXCOM); Naval Operations Logistics Support Center (NOLSC); and FISCs Jacksonville and Norfolk – have been coordinating with Military Sealift Command, and the logistics elements of the Joint Maritime Component (Combined Task Force 43 and 48), to facilitate movement of essential humanitarian assistance/disaster response items to Haiti.

These items included bottled water, food, and medical supplies, as well as responding to force sustainment requirements (ships stores, repair parts, and other subsistence/provisions) for the U.S. Navy ships currently operating in the vicinity of Port-au-Prince, Haiti and Naval Station (NS) Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.

FISC Jacksonville has helped coordinate the deliveries of the following relief supplies since Operation Unified Response started:
• 474,720 Humanitarian Daily Rations
• 1,024 five-gallon water jugs
• 282 16'x32' tents
• 282 sets of tent poles
• 28 pallets of medical supplies
• Six pallets of medical equipment
• 45,964 cases (24/case) of bottled water
• 200 handheld radios
• 1,536 cots

"I congratulate all of our military and government personnel, particularly those at FISC Jacksonville, for all your hard work loading/transporting many pallets of supplies for thousands of people in need," said NAVSUP Commander Rear Adm. Mike Lyden. "Thanks to your help, we are making a difference and helping to alleviate much suffering in Haiti."

But the response effort has involved more than sending supplies. NAVICP has been monitoring readiness of maritime and aviation platforms participating in Operation Unified Response and has built the retrograde pipeline to quickly get parts back to the U.S. for repair. NEXCOM has been coordinating movement of ships stores material and resupply in support of increased personnel at NS Guantanamo Bay.

Other NAVSUP component commands, including FISCs in Pearl Harbor, Norfolk, San Diego, and Sigonella, Sicily, dispatched Creole and French speaking Haitian U.S. Navy Sailors to NS Guantanamo Bay, who volunteered to help with relief efforts. The naval station is serving as the logistics hub for relief forces assigned to Haiti. More than 50 Supply Corps personnel have deployed to the operating area to augment critical command staffs directly contributing to the operation.

"The speed and scale of the NAVSUP's response were grounded in our readiness, professionalism, competence, and ability to successfully execute our global support mission," Lyden said.

"I couldn't ask for a better group of people to help respond to this tragedy. I'm proud to be a Navy Supply Corps Officer," Robinson said.

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