Externally, the N46/47 staff worked hard to foster healthy relationships with the rest of the headquarters staff, ships’ force, port engineers, regional maintenance centers, Space and Naval Warfare Systems Command (SPAWAR) personnel, and NAVSEA codes in order to resolve more complex Category 3 (C3) CASREPs, which indicate major primary mission degradation, as well as the less severe C2 CASREPs.
The commitment to maintain ready and capable amphibious forces had already produced proven results. In May 2015, the USS Essex (LHD 2) ARG deployed with 57 percent fewer CASREPs than the previous deploying ARG, and the following deploying ARG with even less.
However, a full court press by the whole team, including the herculean efforts of the Sailors aboard Makin Island, Comstock and USS Somerset (LPD 25), was applied to the Makin Island ARG – they were able to proudly sail west with only 10 CASREPs. Although specific records haven’t been located, no one in the community can remember an LSD (dock landing ship) ever deploying CASREP free!
The success the N46/47 staff has contributed toward current readiness in the amphibious fleet resulted in the stand-up of office code N48, Oct. 1, to address littoral combat ship and mine countermeasures ship class readiness issues. The expectation is to take the collaborative victories with the amphibious force and apply them to the other two ship classes in order to reduce CASREPs and, ultimately, increase the surface fleet’s warfighting readiness.
Although deploying with so few CASREPs is highly impressive and sets a significant mark in progress, Rowden asked the team for even more.
“The goal is zero CASREPs,” said Rowden. “My team won’t rest until we can achieve the ultimate goal.”