JOINT BASE PEARL HARBOR-HICKAM, Hawaii –
The Hawaii Regional Maintenance Center (HRMC) team at Pearl Harbor Naval Shipyard and Intermediate Maintenance Facility is the Navy’s first responders when it comes to an emergent repair availability (ERAV) on surface ships in the Indo-Pacific Region.
Pearl Harbor sits in a strategic location and is a hub for many emergent repairs for ships transiting through the Pacific Ocean. One successful ERAV took place last fall when the USS Makin Island (LHD 8) departed San Diego on its current deployment.
Makin Island’s main space eductor (used for dewatering different spaces in the ship) located in a main engine room, sprung a leak due to metal piping failure and water began leaking within the machinery space of the ship. The ship’s crew were faced with a challenge to keep water from flowing into other compartments and so, exercised damage control procedures until they could moor at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam for repairs.
According to Juan Carlos Herrera, industrial planning manager for HRMC, beginning on the 15th of November, several departments had three days to prepare for Makin Island’s arrival, complete the repairs, and have the ship underway before Thanksgiving. This process normally takes weeks, but within three days, the HRMC planners and engineers completed the planned work package and the contracting office awarded the contract to Pacific Shipyards International (PSI) within a day.
“Once the ship moored on the 19th of November, our crews began work on the main space eductor and in less than four days the ship was ready to go underway,” Herrera said. “Our teams worked around the clock with 24-hour support to align procedures, set up logistics, schedule services and complete the welding to get the ship back on deployment within their scheduled in-port period with zero days of mission delay.”
The key to the fast turnaround was the rapid coordination by HRMC’s planners, shipbuilding specialists and contracting office along with project support from Code 132 – Quality Assurance, Code 242 – Surface Ship Engineering and Code 250 - Structural Engineering. Another highlight to the success of the ERAV was utilizing the Makin Island’s ability to ballast down and change the angle of the ship so water pressure could be reduced during repairs.
Additionally, PSI, was instrumental in the ERAV’s success through timely communication and work with the HRMC team and their ability to quickly provide the right workforce for the job, according to Herrera.
“I am extremely proud of the team as they worked swiftly, smartly and together as one cohesive unit to get the ship repaired and back out on their mission,” said Lt. Cmdr. Kristopher DeVisser, HRMC Waterfront Operations Officer. “This was a true testament to how quickly we can get the job done in a time of need."
The HRMC team is responsible for orchestrating work with private industry to execute surface ship maintenance, modernization availabilities, conduct surface fleet intermediate level repairs, conduct total ship readiness assessments, and serves as the first responder for surface ship request for technical assistance.