Yokosuka, Japan –
While they may not have been swift in the water, three Navy work boats met a quick end with the help of Defense Logistics Agency employees in Japan.
After months of communications, employees at DLA Disposition Services at Sagami, Japan, helped sailors from Yokosuka Naval Base dispose of three 56-foot naval work boats in half the time expected. Operations Supervisor McKeisha Innis said Sagami personnel worked with Navy Chief Petty Officer Barron Lino from Command Fleet Activities Yokosuka’s Port Operations staff to coordinate the mutilation by the scrap contractor to demilitarize and dispose of the vessels. Although the team estimated three months to complete the work, the boats were processed into 171,212 pounds of scrap in just six weeks.
“It was a total team effort,” Innis said.
Lino’s support team helped arrange for the boats to be received at Yokosuka Naval Base since their size prevented transport to Sagami for destruction. Using the base as a forward collection site, Sagami-based employees Takashi Saito and Toshiharu Hoki ensured that a mutilation surveillance plan was established, hot work permit issued, visitor passes and escorts for contractors were in place, plus safety and spill contamination procedures were established prior to start of the project.
Among the challenges faced in the project was finding the most suitable area to conduct the mutilation. Innis said a ramp work area was available close to ocean, but it could only be used for operations and destruction during low tide. She added that the team also had to ensure that the boats were staged within easy access of the contractor’s material handling equipment.
Scrap removal operations halted after the first boat was demilitarized to ensure the Ministry of Export and Trade Industry for the Government of Japan approved of the removal of scrap from the naval base and approval of the contractor by Japanese Customs officials was confirmed. Since the first three boats were completed, Innis has learned the unit is sending five more for disposal.