The U.S.Navy aircraft carrier USS Dwight D. Eisenhower (CVN 69) (Ike) began its six-month Planned Incremental Availability (PIA) at Norfolk Naval Shipyard (NNSY) in Portsmouth, Virginia on Sept. 17.
“PIA gives us the opportunity to complete major ship alterations and improvements, as well as improve habitability for the crew, that cannot be normally completed in our short pierside availabilities at Norfolk,” said Lt. Cmdr. Julian Wilson, Ike’s ship maintenance manager.
This restoration will be led by 12 ship’s force work production teams comprised of Ike crew members who will be working in tandem with personnel from NNSY and outside contractors. The goal is to improve living standards, increase mission readiness and ensure the 50-year projected service life of the Ike.
“We currently have about 350 personnel assigned to ship’s force work teams in order to improve various items throughout the ship,” said Wilson. “These items include, but are not limited to, decking systems, berthing area replacements, lagging, doors, paint, cableway improvement, fuels, valve barge, ventilation, tanks, electrical matting and light industrial facility (LIFAC). ”
The PIA period has taken a large amount of planning and the workload will take teamwork on multiple levels.
“There was a lot of preparation made prior to our arrival and it’s good to finally be here and execute the plan as envisioned,” said Ensign Frank Garcia, Ike’s assistant maintenance manager. “Since our arrival, Ike and its crew have received tremendous support from the NNSY team, whether it is work integration or crew accommodations. We have really taken on a culture of ‘one team’ at NNSY. This is a collective effort and we are all working in sync to deliver Ike on time.”
PIA is expected to consist of nearly 419 man-days worth of work, equivalent to 3,355,352 contractor and ship’s force man-hours.
“Ike and the NNSY team are working hard to reach our on-time delivery date in support of the Optimized Fleet Response Plan,” said Garcia. “Our goal is for Ike to be at a high level of readiness once we complete our availability, and the PIA is a necessary investment into Ike’s future that will pay dividends once we return to sea.”
Mass Comm. Specialist 2nd Class Grant Wamack, USS Dwight D. Eisenhower (CVN 69) Public Affairs