Two unfinished oilers to be scrapped

Two never-used Navy ships head to scrapyard

USNS Bejamin Isherwood and the USNS Henry Eckford, Kaiser class oilers, were never completed:

When the company defaulted on its Navy contract in 1989 the 660-foot ships were sent to Florida for completion, but cost disputes terminated that contract in 1993.

Since then, the vessels have sat 95 and 84 percent complete at the mouth of the James River as part of the mothballed ghost fleet.

From the comments section:

Built in an inept shipyard with heavy Democratic ties in Philly. They were really messed up in construction, with an unsuccessful attempt to fix them in another yard. Since then, the serving Kaiser class oilers have been modified and kept up to standards. These bollard huggers have moldered, without the regular upkeep that makes a ship so expensive to keep in top operating order.

and

I was an electrician at Tampa Shipbuilding and a member of the test and trials crew that would have taken the Isherwood for sea trials.

I can’t comment on what happened in Pennsylvania but in Florida the story was pure incompetence by management and union foot dragging by labor.

From day 1 the project was mismanaged. The parts not installed were crated in huge 8′x8′ wooden crates 5′ tall with no concern for contents. Machine parts were thrown on top of light fixtures…
This act of near sabotage by the Pennsylvania workers who were losing their jobs was not appreciated but was understandable.

Arriving in Florida the crates were opened and inventoried… then the parts were returned to the crates!

Murdoc’s been thinking we need a couple of big prison ships. Maybe these would have worked.

Instead we paid the UK $10 million to take them off our hands and have them scrapped.

(via Instapundit)

Here’s the lead ship of the class in action:

A starboard beam view of the fleet oiler USNS HENRY J. KAISER (T-AO-187) underway alongside the aircraft carrier USS SARATOGA (CV-60) for an underway replenishment. Photographer's Name: PH2 Al Renkel Date Shot: 8/13/1993

A starboard beam view of the fleet oiler USNS HENRY J. KAISER (T-AO-187) underway alongside the aircraft carrier USS SARATOGA (CV-60) for an underway replenishment. Photographer's Name: PH2 Al Renkel Date Shot: 8/13/1993

Comments

  1. Didn’t the UK just send their aircraft carriers to Turkey to be scrapped? (Sorry we can’t help in Lybia chaps)

  2. to murdoc, great to see your interest..what a shame to see these great ships wasted for no reason..and to top it off, give someone else money to scrap them..our money twice over..why dont they give these ships to an American company to use for product relocation..heck I will take 9 million and put these to use for my own business..not scrap..we have already paid for these..our hard working money..wish we could all do something about this..my name is Don Z and I am at itsmoose2u@yahoo.com if anyone has a solution…thanks for reading

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