CAVASSHIPS Podcast [Jul 28, ’23] Ep: 105 Sal Mercogliano & John Konrad


Welcome to the CavasShips Podcast with Christopher P. Cavas and Chris Servello…a weekly podcast looking at naval and maritime events and issues of the day – in the US, across the seas and around the world. This week…Russia is threatening to widen the war on Ukraine into attacks on merchant shipping in the Black Sea. A major ship fire at Port Newark, New Jersey was extinguished after four days, but what are the wider implications for the maritime world? And the Maritime Administration’s management of US shipping is under question. Sal Mercogliano of What The Ship and gCaptain’s John Konrad are with us to dive into these important issues.

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This Week’s Naval Round Up:

The attack submarine USS ANNAPOLIS arrived at the South Korean Navy’s Jeju naval base on July 24. It was the second US submarine visit to the Republic of Korea in a week, following the ballistic missile submarine USS KENTUCKY’s port call at Busan from July 18 to 21. North Korea continued to react to the visits by carrying out further missile launches into the seas around the Korean peninsula.

The British carrier HMS PRINCE OF WALES was at sea July 28 carrying out full power trials after completing repairs to a damaged propeller shaft. The ship broke down last September and moved to BAE Systems Rosyth in Scotland last October. The repairs are estimated to have cost £20 million.

The large destroyer ZUMWALT DDG 1000 left San Diego July 27 headed for Mississippi, but a maintenance issue caused the ship to reverse course and return to San Diego for repairs. A Navy spokesman said it was expected the ship would resume the transit “in the near future.” The ship is headed to Ingalls Shipbuilding in Pascagoula for a major modernization and technology upgrade that includes installation of the Conventional Prompt Strike weapons system, intended to make the ZUMWALT the first US Navy warship to field a hypersonic weapon. ZUMWALT is expected to remain at Ingalls at least into 2025 before returning to active service. After the ZUMWALT, the LYNDON JOHNSON DDG 1002 will undergo the upgrade, followed by the third ship in the class, the MICHAEL MONSOOR DDG 1001.

In old ship news, a decommissioning ceremony was held July 21 in Keyport, Washington for the Los Angeles-class attack submarine USS CHICAGO SSN 721. Built at Newport News Shipbuilding, CHICAGO was commissioned in 1986 and was in service for 36 years, completing her final deployment in November 2022.

In new ship news, the Flight II Arleigh Burke-class destroyer HARVEY C BARNUM Junior, DDG 124, was christened July 29 at General Dynamics Bath Iron Works in Bath, Maine. The ship’s namesake, a Marine Medal of Honor awardee of the Vietnam War, was present at the ceremony.

And Navy Secretary Carlos del Toro on July 27 announced that the expeditionary sea base ship ESB 8 will be named for Hector A. Cafferata Junior, a Medal of Honor recipient from the Korean War. ESB 8 currently is programmed to be the last of six such ships built at GD NASSCO in San Diego.

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