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U.S. 6th Fleet exercises expeditionary ordnance loading capability in Rota for the second time

Navy News Service

Story Number: NNS170418-03
Release Date: 4/18/2017 8:49:00 AM

From U.S. 6th Fleet Public Affairs in coordination with Naval Station Rota Public Affairs

NAVAL STATION ROTA, Spain (NNS) -- U.S. 6th Fleet, in coordination with USS Ross (DDG 71), Navy Munitions Command Rota, Spain, Naval Expeditionary Logistics Support Group and the U.S. Air Force 496th Air Base Wing, conducted an ordnance loading exercise at Naval Station Rota, Spain March 24, 2017.

The expeditionary ordnance loading exercise demonstrated the U.S. Navy's capability to load ordnance onto naval vessels in non-traditional locations, and was the second in a series of events planned for the next year in the U.S. 6th Fleet area of operations.

This exercise showcased enhanced capabilities to strengthen naval power at and from the sea to contribute to a more stable, secure and prosperous European region. This second event built upon the first event, which took place in January, by expanding the scope to test more of the pre-loading logistical requirements. An inert shape was flown to Moron Air Base where it was then convoyed down to Rota. The addition of new units and multiple locations required a higher level of coordination.

It also demonstrated the capability to airlift ordnance to a remote locations, transport it to its ultimate station, and load the ordnance onto a ship, all while providing security throughout the operation.

Subsequent loading events will continue to increase in complexity to build capacity for U.S. Navy forces to conduct ordnance loading across a wide range of the U.S. Navy's platforms in locations across the European theater.

Leadership quote:

"This second expeditionary ordnance loading event built upon existing relationships and expanded to include new ones, increasing our interoperability. This evolving capability compliments and supplements existing ordnance load capabilities and focuses on closing known operational gaps, with each event testing new skills and sustaining existing capabilities. This will allow us to respond more rapidly in any crisis and provide greater flexibility to sustain combat operations, allowing our units to be more effective, efficient, and lethal."
- Commander, Task Force 68, Capt. Leonard Lyon

Quick Facts:
-Commander, Task Force (CTF) 68 commands all Naval Expeditionary Forces in U.S. European Command (EUCOM) and U.S. Africa Command (AFRICOM) areas of responsibility in direct support of Commander, U.S. Naval Forces Europe and Africa and Commander, U.S. 6th Fleet (CNE-CNA/C6F) Maritime and Theater Security Cooperation (TSC) Strategies and Maritime Support Plans.

-NAVSTA Rota supports Naval Forces Europe-Africa, U.S. 6th Fleet and COCOM strategic priorities by providing airfield and port facilities, security, force protection, logistical support, administrative support and emergency services to all U.S. and NATO forces.

-U.S. 6th Fleet, headquartered in Naples, Italy, conducts the full spectrum of joint and naval operations, often in concert with allied, joint, and interagency partners, in order to advance U.S. national interests and security and stability in Europe and Africa.

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