The Constellation arrives for mothballing

It takes a mighty tug — and $400,000 — to tow an aircraft carrier

The aircraft carrier USS Constellation, deactivated as soon as she returned from duty during the Iraq campaign, arrived this past weekend in Bremerton, WA, to be mothballed. The brand-new USS Ronald Reagan replaces the “Connie” in the fleet, who’s arrival means the end of service for the USS Midway. The Midway heads to a museum in San Diego.

The Navy says the nearly $400,000 towing fee to bring the ship to Bremerton is cheaper than paying for food and fuel for a crew of 2,500 to steam it here, then fly them back.

That $400K is really how much it cost really seems incredible to me, but I guess I’ll take their word for it.

UPDATE: The Midway, launched during World War 2, had been in mothballs since 1992. The same tug that brought the Constellation to Washington is taking the Midway to San Diego. Here’s a story on the Midway’s departure from Bremerton, and here’s the San Diego Aircraft Carrier Museum site.