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Thread: ghost fleet

  1. #31
    Defense Professional RustyBattleship's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dreadnought View Post
    Mr. L. I dont doubt that MARAD is well capable of caring for Iowa, but would she not be better served in Norfolk with Whiskey? M :
    The East and Gulf coasts already have an overwhelming monopoly of Battleship museums. There is none on the West Coast. Actually only two Aircraft Carriers (the Hornet in Alameda and the Midway in San Diego).

    As for MARAD's capabilities of maintaining the ship, they are extremely limited by small budgets, lack of personnel and this is normally not their job. However, extra measures are being taken to have the ship in somewhat of a decent condition for turnover to a museum.

    This is because many people screamed to high heaven about the Navy's total lack of care when Iowa was anchored off of Rhode Island for a couple of years with NO dehumidification power and NO cathodic protection.

    When she was moved to Benecia, several organizations (including myself when I was registered as Dreadnaught Consulting) bugged the hell out of Bremerton (INACTSHIPFAC for all of west coast mothball fleets) and they made sure power was run out to her for D/H and installed over-the-side Impressed Current Cathodic Protection anodes.

    The ship still shows damage from her Rhode Island "abandonment" such as leaf plugged deck drain piping that filled full of water, froze in winter bursting the pipe and running water down into the compartment below when Spring came.

    This is all fixable and even MARAD does some patching here and there when they can with what materials they can afford.



    Pic: Flaking paint on overhead where a broken deck drain flooded the compartment up to 8 inches deep. Paint is of wrong formula and excess moisture from the flooding is causing it to peel off.
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  2. #32
    Military Professional wabpilot's Avatar
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    My impression was that the MARAD ships are just being stored awaiting disposal. The problem being that environmentally sound disposal is difficult to find. Even moving the MARAD ships might cause environmentalists to get upset. For the warships, the situation was different. My impression was the warships, i.e. Iowa, are at least paid for from the USN budget. Thus, they are in better material condition. Is that not the case?

  3. #33
    Defense Professional RustyBattleship's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wabpilot View Post
    My impression was that the MARAD ships are just being stored awaiting disposal. The problem being that environmentally sound disposal is difficult to find. Even moving the MARAD ships might cause environmentalists to get upset. For the warships, the situation was different. My impression was the warships, i.e. Iowa, are at least paid for from the USN budget. Thus, they are in better material condition. Is that not the case?
    That's getting into an area I'm not experienced on. Seeing the condition of most of the ships in Benicia I tend to agree with you that the Iowa is an exception to the rule and more care is taken of her than the AK's, AO's, etc. that are anchored there.

    Mothballed combat ships I have inspected in Bremerton are kept in pretty good shape. That included two Battleships and two Carriers we were on. But then, MARAD isn't the "contract" agency caring for them.

    As for environmentalist concerns, they have justification. When Missouri was towed from Bremerton to Pearl Harbor, she was berthed for a week in the fresh water of the Columbia River to kill off Bremerton fouling and not transport it to Hawaii.

    They were perfectly justified in this. When the BB Floating Dry Dock was towed from Subic Bay to Pearl, WESTPAC critters were still sticking to it and started to pollute the Mid Pacific waters of Pearl Harbor.

    Strange story about that Dry Dock. It was towed from Guam to Subic Bay back in the late 70's and a Filipino friend of mine was the General Foreman Rigger in charge of erecting the side walls. Prior to the Guam assignment, that same Floating Dry Dock was berthed at Long Beach Naval Station until the 1960's.
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  4. #34
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    List of Ships in the Reserve Fleets

    Hi Guys,

    Was browsing the Forum and registered to pass on what may be of help. Went to Suisun Bay in 2006 to research my book on the USN and took many pictures from a charter boat.

    Of interest to you guys might be the following link which is updated regularly by MARAD, listing all of the vessels in the reserve anchorages and their status. It takes a little time but I managed to identify the majority of ships at Suisun Bay (and Hawaii). Hope this helps.

    http://www.marad.dot.gov/Offices/Shi..._Inventory.pdf

  5. #35
    Official Thread Jacker Senior Contributor gunnut's Avatar
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    This just in: environmental groups in San Francisco sue to have the mothball fleet removed from Suisan Bay.
    "Only Nixon can go to China." -- Old Vulcan proverb.

  6. #36
    Defense Professional RustyBattleship's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gunnut View Post
    This just in: environmental groups in San Francisco sue to have the mothball fleet removed from Suisan Bay.
    Link please?
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  7. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by RustyBattleship View Post
    Link please?
    I think he's being sarcastic Dick...or, at least I'm hoping he is.

    Frankly I'm surprised that the tree-huggers haven't screamed about it sooner, given that it's in their backyard.

  8. #38
    Official Thread Jacker Senior Contributor gunnut's Avatar
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    Actually I'm being serious. I read it on today's "state and region" section of the OC Register. Let me see if I can find a link.

    Here we go: News: Environmental groups sue for removal of 'mothball fleet' | - OCRegister.com

    Tuesday, October 30, 2007
    Environmental groups sue for removal of 'mothball fleet'
    Groups complain the fleet is generating toxic pollution.
    The Associated Press

    SAN FRANCISCO Several environmental groups on Monday sued the federal government over toxic pollution caused by a fleet of mothballed warships floating near San Francisco Bay.

    The groups accuse the U.S. Maritime Administration of violating state and federal environmental regulations as dozens of decaying ships linger well past a congressional deadline ordering their removal.

    The suit was filed Monday afternoon in U.S. District Court in Sacramento.

    "These vessels have long since ceased being useful for transportation and are now just floating junkyards," according to the complaint brought by the Natural Resources Defense Council, Arc Ecology and San Francisco Baykeeper.

    More than 70 ships comprise the Suisun Bay Reserve Fleet, some dating back to World War II. The old ships were once kept afloat in case of war, but many have fallen into disrepair, overtaken by rust and rot.

    The suit asks the court to order the federal agency to prepare an official review of the environmental impact caused by the ships and to remove hazardous wastes – including paint, discarded oil and asbestos – from the vessels.

    The head of the Maritime Administration said in a statement that the agency was engaged in "ongoing and extensive efforts to ensure the safety of these vessels."

    "The best way, ultimately, to protect the Suisun Bay is to remove these vessels in as timely a manner as possible," Maritime Administrator Sean T. Connaughton said. "We hope this latest development does not needlessly delay our efforts to remove these vessels."

    A congressional order set a 2006 deadline to scrap more than 50 ships, but a regulatory quagmire has kept the fleet anchored in place in the shallow, brackish inland waters east of San Francisco Bay.

    Before they can be scrapped and sold, Coast Guard regulations require the removal of barnacles and other sea creatures clinging to the obsolete ships' hulls. That process causes toxic paint to flake off into the water. Fear of contamination has delayed their disposal.

    Disposal operations in the country's two other reserve fleets in Beaumont, Texas, and on the James River near Newport News, Va., were also halted after the discovery of paint in Suisun Bay, though recent agreements with both states paved the way for disposal to resume.

    A February study commissioned by the federal government suggested that even without the scraping, paint flaking off the Suisun Bay ships has shed tons of toxic heavy metals into estuary sediments.

    Earlier this month, California water regulators informed the federal agency it could be fined up to $25,000 per day if it fails to come up with a plan to stop the paint from falling into the water.

    The fines have not yet been issued, said Bruce Wolfe, executive officer of the San Francisco Bay Regional Water Quality Control Board.

    But state regulators have seen "very little progress in terms of what the Maritime Administration will do to stop the ongoing discharge of hazardous materials from the ships," Wolfe said.
    I do see their point. Some of these ships are well over 40 years old. Why didn't we blow them up instead of using newly decommissioned ships like the Sprucan class and one of the Ticos?
    Last edited by gunnut; 31 Oct 07, at 03:31.
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  9. #39
    Military Professional wabpilot's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by gunnut View Post
    I do see their point. Some of these ships are well over 40 years old. Why didn't we blow them up instead of using newly decommissioned ships like the Sprucan class and one of the Ticos?
    The problem is moving them may cause as much environmental damage as letting them rot in place. It's a damned if you do, damned if you dont situation.

  10. #40
    Official Thread Jacker Senior Contributor gunnut's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by wabpilot View Post
    The problem is moving them may cause as much environmental damage as letting them rot in place. It's a damned if you do, damned if you dont situation.
    I can see that part of the problem too. Why didn't the navy blow them up like 15 years ago when they weren't so dilapidated? Did someone just say "hey it's too much trouble to move them, let's just let them sit and save ourselves some trouble?"
    "Only Nixon can go to China." -- Old Vulcan proverb.

  11. #41
    Defense Professional RustyBattleship's Avatar
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    Another bunch of whiners and cry-babies trying to get their 15 minutes of Andy Warhol fame.
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  12. #42
    Defense Professional Dreadnought's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by RustyBattleship View Post
    Another bunch of whiners and cry-babies trying to get their 15 minutes of Andy Warhol fame.
    Fortitude.....The strength to persist...The courage to endure.

  13. #43
    Defense Professional Dreadnought's Avatar
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    Nice to see there are still a few of those bad boys left in reserve. I was surprised to read above that she was removed from Subic Bay. A friend was an officer onboard the America (CV66) and they transported a few Iowa class rifles to Subic. Whereas I have also read that a few went by an LS class ship.

    Myself I have only been aboard one transportable dry dock that one belonged to Sun ship of Chester. That was eons ago before they sold her off.
    Last edited by Dreadnought; 01 Nov 07, at 14:13.
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  14. #44
    Senior Contributor Rumrunner's Avatar
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    If anybody is interested, I've ID'd almost every ship visible in the USN Reserve Fleets and MARAD Reserve Fleets on wikimapia, which uses the (very dated) sat imagery visible on google maps.

    NISMF Philadelphia:
    Wikimapia - Let's describe the whole world!

    NISMF Bremerton:
    Wikimapia - Let's describe the whole world!

    NISMF Pearl Harbor:
    Wikimapia - Let's describe the whole world!

    James River Reserve Fleet:
    Wikimapia - Let's describe the whole world!

    Beaumont Reserve Fleet:
    Wikimapia - Let's describe the whole world!

    Suisun Bay Reserve Fleet:
    Wikimapia - Let's describe the whole world!
    You know JJ, Him could do it....

  15. #45
    Defense Professional Dreadnought's Avatar
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    How old is this imagery of Philly Naval Reserve? By the way the PG (Patrol Gunboat) you have listed as PG-100 Ex USS Douglas is actually PG-90 USS Cannon. There are also a few other ships missing from the imagery, This is why I was wondering how old the imagery is. Nice job though.

    There are a few in Bremerton that are no longer among the "floating" as well such as the fast supply ships Camden and Sacramento if memory serves.
    Last edited by Dreadnought; 16 Jul 09, at 16:04.
    Fortitude.....The strength to persist...The courage to endure.

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