USS Harry S Truman Onloads 1,800 Tons of Ammunition
Focus on Defense:
USS HARRY S. TRUMAN, At Sea, March 23, 2009 -- USS Harry S. Truman (CVN 75) completed the onload of more than 1,800 tons of ammunition March 21, preparing the ship for upcoming work-up cycles and eventual deployment.
Cmdr. Steven Anderjack, the weapons officer on board, said Truman is now fully operational, capable of carrying out both training and combat operations.
"We are about 90 percent fully loaded in our ability to conduct a mission," said Anderjack. "In support of the upcoming training-events, we have all of our non-combat expenditure-allowance. We are ready for any taskings that may be provided by the command."
Transferring ordnance from the USNS Robert E. Peary (T-AKE 5) to Truman was a large evolution that involved moving more than 1,200 pallets of ammunition by both vertical and connected replenishment.
"The ammo onload went as perfectly as it possibly could have gone," Anderjack said. "We had trained a number of folks in ordnance-handling, including all our forklift drivers and flight-deck personnel to handle both vertical replenishment and connected replenishment, so [ultimately] we could bring on ammo from three, different points on the ship."
First, helicopters dropped ammunition off on the flight deck, then Sailors moved it to the hangar bay and from there, into the magazines. Other pallets of ammunition were received directly into the hangar bays, via lines connecting Truman to Peary, before being transferred to the magazines.
The evolution required the cooperation of virtually every department on the ship; requiring all hands to complete the nearly two-day event.
"It can't be done by just one department or one team. Everybody has to be involved," said Aviation Ordnanceman 2nd Class (AW/SW) Marilyn Williams, the ammo accountant aboard Truman. "On top of our weapon's department, we also have help from deck department, air department, supply and of course you have to give credit to security as well."
The types of ordnance received encompassed a wide range of explosives and parts for bombs, missiles and small arms. Williams said Truman's weapons department carries 500, 1,000 and 2,000-pound bombs, Sidewinder missiles, Sparrow missiles and a variety of rounds for ship's defense-systems and small arms.
"Just about every piece of ordnance known to man was received," Anderjack said.
As part of any evolution, especially one dealing with the transfer of dangerous munitions, the safety of the Sailors involved was of primary concern. Williams said the onload was planned from the beginning to end long before the actual event, to ensure that it was carried out safely and efficiently.
With the completion of ammo onload and fully stocked weapons magazines, Truman is now ready to take the fight wherever the country calls.
(Report by Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Apprentice Jared Hall and Mass Communication Specialist Jonnie Hobby, USS Harry S. Truman Public Affairs.)
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