VIDEO: USS Little Rock to winter in Montreal, not Florida

VIDEO: USS Little Rock to winter in Montreal, not Florida Fox News

JANUARY 23, 2018 — The USS Little Rock (LCS 9), the Navy's newest littoral combat ship, is set to spend the winter in Montreal rather than its new homeport of Mayport, FL.

After its commissioning in Buffalo, NY, on December 16, the USS Little Rock (LCS 9) headed for its new homeport, but encountered unusually heavy ice conditions that have kept it in Montreal, where it will stay until weather conditions improve.

"The temperatures in Montreal and throughout the transit area have been colder than normal, and included near-record low temperatures, which created significant and historical conditions in the late December, early January time frame," U.S. Surface Force Atlantic spokeswoman Lt. Cmdr. Courtney Hillson told the Canadian Press in a phone interview. "Keeping the ship in Montreal until waterways are clear ensures the safety of the ship and crew, and will have limited impact on the ship's operational schedule."

She added that the ship has been equipped with temporary heaters and 16 de-icers designed to reduce ice accumulation on the hull. The crew has been provided with cold-weather clothing.

In an interview with the U.S. Naval Institute Lt. Cmdr. Hillson said that, while transiting the icy St. Lawrence River to Montreal, the ship saw damage to feedback cables that "did not impact the ability of the ship to transit the seaway."

The cables connect the bridge and the ships' steerable water jets. They do not send commands from the bridge to the waterjets, but send feedback information to the bridge to tell operators that the waterjets have followed the commands given. The cables run underneath the hull, and Hillson told USNI that the "root cause of the failure is currently unknown, but based on components being frozen and iced over, it is likely that ice was a contributing factor."

Repairs to the cables were completed January 4, and the ship was ready to depart Montreal, "but the extreme cold, subsequent condition of the St. Lawrence Seaway and availability of icebreakers and support ships caused the delay."


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