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Team Carl Vinson Completes Ammo Offload

Navy News Service

Story Number: NNS150710-11
Release Date: 7/10/2015 2:26:00 PM

By Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Patrick W. Menah Jr., USS Carl Vinson Public Affairs

USS CARL VINSON, At Sea (NNS) -- The aircraft carrier USS Carl Vinson (CVN 70) conducted a successful ammunition offload in preparation for an upcoming planned incremental availability (PIA) period, July 9.

During the two-day process, Carl Vinson Weapons Department Sailors moved nearly 1,400 tons of bombs and ammunition from the flight deck and hangar bay to the Military Sealift Command dry cargo and ammunition ship USNS Caesar Chavez (T-AKE 11) during simultaneous connected replenishment (CONREP) and vertical replenishment (VERTREP).

'The purpose of the underway was to offload all ordnance and
empty the ship's magazines,' said Master Chief Aviation Ordnanceman Alan Schiftner, Carl Vinson Weapons Department leading chief petty officer. 'A lot of welding happens during PIA and the Navy has regulations to address doing that type of work when there are explosives on board. It's important that we get all of that ordnance off the ship so we can perform the necessary maintenance safely.'

The offload, which was originally expected to take a total of four days, was completed sooner than expected, allowing Team Carl Vinson to return to homeport a full day early.

'The team performed outstandingly well these past couple days,' said Cmdr. Michael McPhail, Carl Vinson gun boss. 'They were quick to get the ordnance transferred, and it was accomplished safely, without injury, and ahead of schedule. We accomplished the task early because everything went according to plan.'

The offload was a product of extensive planning that began in early March, while Carl Vinson was deployed in the U.S. 5th Fleet area of operations, added Schiftner.

'Our department has spent months packaging our ordnance and preparing it for shipping,' said Schiftner. 'It has really been a group effort, though. Without the help of the supply department, we would not have been able to get the necessary pallets, banding and packing materials to complete the offload.'

Lt. Cmdr. Albert Budaszewski, Carl Vinson ordnance handling officer, added that the weapons department was able to convert a number of CONREPs to VERTREPs, thus expediting the offload.

'The cooperation, effort, and support from all departments on board the ship helped immensely,' said Budaszewski.

'I am very proud of all the men and women in the weapons department and the effort they put forth to accomplish the task,' added Schiftner. 'It's really the crew of the ship that is responsible for its success and performance. We're already looking forward to taking all that ordnance back on board early next year once PIA is over.'

The crew of Carl Vinson is pierside in their homeport of San Diego.

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