CHANGI NAVAL BASE, Singapore – Working ports may not sound like much fun, but when you are able to maximize liberty while ensuring a tremendous amount of work gets accomplished, the results and benefits are readily seen. The Ticonderoga Class guided missile cruise USS Cowpens was able to complete 128 lagging jobs, as well effect repairs on several roller chocks, upholstery on ships seating and a fuel tank during a nine day port call to Singapore.
Cowpens’ Port Engineer, Mark Moehlenbruck noted that, "Singapore is a great alternative for getting lots of smaller repairs done in a short timeframe. We've been trying schedule this visit for quite some time and I think that even with the Chinese New Year scheduling conflicts, we've shown it’s a good resource to use."
"The importance of lagging should not be underestimated. It makes a tremendous difference in some of the day-to-day things we do,” commented Lieutenant Commander Will Chambers, Cowpens Executive Officer.
Lagging is a form of insulation that can be found throughout the ship to help prevent condensation, mold, mildew and improper heat transfer. “It keeps the cool things cool, and the hot things hot. Just like you'd hope for,” Chambers said.
"Some of these jobs have been on our radar for over two years or more, but we haven't been able to complete them in Yokosuka due to operational needs in other areas,” said Chief Warrant Officer William Thames, the officer in charge of working with the Singaporean shipyard.
Cowpens also participated in a Community Service Event that involved giving the staff of the Singapore International Community School (ICS) a tour of the ship. The ICS is local Christian school that has students from over 25 countries with the majority from the US, Korea, and Indonesia.
“This new understanding of the Navy Culture will help us better meet the needs of many of our students,” said Ms. Gretchen Schlie, School Principal.
“I'm very proud of what we were able to accomplish. We were able to maximize duty section involvement, supervise and engage on every job we set out to do – including a COMSERV, and yet ensure the crew got a fun break during certain days for liberty,” said Captain Marin. “We even managed to squeeze in a few other jobs that came up at the last minute.”
Cowpens is a assigned to the George Washington Strike Group and currently deployed for independent steaming and training operations.