The Navy accepted delivery of the future USS Fort Lauderdale (LPD 28), the 12th San Antonio class-amphibious transport dock ship, from Huntington Ingalls Industries’ Ingalls (HII) Shipbuilding Division, March 11.
Delivery of LPD 28 marks the official transfer of the ship from the shipbuilder to the Navy. Prior to delivery, the ship successfully conducted a series of at-sea and pier-side trials to demonstrate its material and operational readiness.
“Following successful builder’s and acceptance trials, LPD 28 will soon be ready to join the fleet to provide critical readiness and capacity to our sailors,” said Capt. Cedric McNeal, program manager, Amphibious Warfare Program Office, at the Navy’s Program Executive Office (PEO) Ships. “This ship will help expand our advantage in the maritime domain and brings critical capability now and in the future.”
The San Antonio-class is designed to support embarking, transporting, and landing Marines and their equipment by conventional or air-cushioned landing craft. The ship’s capabilities are further enhanced by its flight deck and hangar, enabling the ship to operate a variety of Marine Corps helicopters and the Osprey tilt-rotor aircraft (MV-22).
“We at HII and Ingalls are honored to support our customer on the national security mission at the heart of this work,” said Kari Wilkinson, president of the Ingalls Shipbuilding. “Mindful of safety and quality, we are incredibly proud of the collaborative Navy-industry team that delivers this vital capability.”
The future USS Fort Lauderdale was delivered during a March 11 ceremony with shipbuilders, ship’s force and representatives of Supervisor of Shipbuilding Gulf Coast together in attendance.
“What a great tradition to be part of,” said Steve Sloan, Ingalls LPD program manager. “This delivery event is the culmination of hard work and dedication of thousands of shipbuilders, industry partners from just about every state, as well as our Navy Supervisor of Shipbuilding, Gulf Coast, shipmates that worked with us each and every day to ensure Fort Lauderdale became a mission capable ship.”
Ingalls has additional San Antonio-class ships under construction, including LPD 29 and Harrisburg (LPD 30), the latter of which is the first of the LPD Flight II ships, designed as the replacement for the aging Whidbey Island-class LSDs. Fabrication of the 15th San Antonio-class ship, LPD 31, will begin later this year.