After more than two years of refitting, the Navy’s oldest guided-missile submarine is once again ready to set sail.
USS Ohio completed its maintenance availability at Puget Sound Naval Shipyard & Intermediate Maintenance Facility Wednesday, closing a 27-month period for updates and upgrades to most major onboard systems.
Nearly 400,000 days of work by the shipyard’s Ohio project team, ship’s force, contractors and others helped return the submarine to the fleet, according to the Navy. Major repairs included preservation and structural work on the submarine’s sail, tanks and superstructure.
“Our central focus on the Ohio project has always been to provide the maintenance required to quickly return this Naval warship back to the fleet in support of our national defense capability,” project superintendent Christopher Byron said in a news release.
“Since joining the Ohio project, I have witnessed team members consistently demonstrating the values that our command upholds — integrity, teamwork, ingenuity, excellence and service,” Byron said.
“I couldn’t be more proud of this team and look forward to a strong continued relationship with the SSGN sailors onboard Ohio and the supporting submarine community.”
Ohio’s maintenance period began on April 25, 2017, when the submarine arrived in dry dock after a 20-month Pacific deployment. Originally commissioned as the lead boat of its class of ballistic missile submarine fleet on Nov. 11, 1981, Ohio was also the first submarine to be converted to a guided missile platform. The conversion ended when the vessel returned to service as a nuclear-powered ballistic missile submarine in 2006.
“Days like today are a perfect example of why we do what we do,” Capt. Dianna Wolfson, PSNS & IMF commander, said.
“Ohio plays a vital role in America’s defense, and we’ve returned it to the fleet, ready to do whatever our nation requires of it. We can all take great pride in the work our team did for the ship and we wish her and the crew well as they rejoin our Naval forces on patrol.”