Detyens Shipyards Inc. was awarded a firm- fixed-price contract, worth around $9 million, for the mid-term availability of the U.S. Navy’s Mercy-class hospital ship USNS Comfort (T-AH 20).
The contract was awarded by the Navy’s Military Sealift Command (MSC) which operates the vessel.
The work, which will commence on Jan. 8, 2019, will include general steel and piping repairs, air conditioning plant installation, air conditioning plant maintenance, steam driven fire pump turbine inspection, bilge and ballast segregation, lifeboat and life raft davit falls replacement, and ventilation duct cleaning. Work will be performed in North Charleston, South Carolina, and is expected to be completed by Feb. 21, 2019.
This contract includes options which, if exercised, would bring the cumulative value of this contract to just over $11.3 million.
USNS Comfort (T-AH-20)
USNS Comfort (T-AH-20) is the second Mercy-class hospital ship to join the U.S. Navy’s fleet and the third Navy ship to bear the name Comfort.
The USNS prefix identifies Comfort as a non-commissioned ship owned by the U.S. Navy and operationally crewed by civilians from the Navy’s Military Sealift Command (MSC). In keeping with her status as a non-combatant vessel, naval personnel from the “combat” specialties are not assigned as regular crew or staff. In accordance with the Geneva Conventions, Comfort and her crew do not carry any offensive weapons. Firing upon Comfort would be considered a war crime as the ship only carries weapons for self-defense.
As a hospital ship, Comfort’s duties include providing emergency, on-site care for U.S. combatant forces deployed in war or other operations.
Like her sister ship USNS Mercy, Comfort was built as a San Clemente-class oil tanker in 1976 by the National Steel and Shipbuilding Company (NASSCO). Her original name was SS Rose City and she was launched from San Diego, California. Her career as an oil tanker ended when she was delivered to the U.S. Navy on 1 December 1987.