Story by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Mike Pernick
BREMERTON, Washington – USS John C. Stennis (CVN 74) officially entered its planned incremental availability (PIA) period, Feb. 16.
John C. Stennis Sailors and Puget Sound Naval Shipyard and Intermediate Maintenance Facility (PSNS & IMF) workers will be executing the largest work package for a CVN-class ship in a six-month period.
“PIA planning was being conducted on deployment,” said Lt. Cmdr. Richfield Agullana, USS John C. Stennis’ (CVN 74) assistant maintenance officer and ship’s work force package team leader, from Kaneohe, Hawaii. “As soon as deployment came to an end we began working with other departments to identify Sailors that would be part of the PIA teams.”
Some Sailors are temporarily sent to PIA teams to work on a wide variety of tasks including habitability; replacing deck and tile surfaces; testing and repairing valves, fan room, vents and voids for proper function and cleanliness; repairing damaged doors and ladders; as well as organizing and maintaining electrical cable systems throughout the ship.
One of the challenges the crew has faced is the organization and training of Sailors transitioning into their temporarily assigned roles.
“Organizing the teams and setting up takes a lot of work,” said Lt. Clinton Newman, John C. Stennis’ avionics armament officer and barge mayor, from Anniston, Alabama. “We’ve had to write up a lot of instructions and standard operating procedures because of ongoing changes and expectations.”
Other members of the crew will be working within their departments, both carrying out routine maintenance and doing more in-depth work, including repairing ship systems and working alongside outside organizations as new installations are made.
In addition to John C. Stennis’ crew, PSNS & IMF employees and contractors from many companies will be carrying out extensive work onboard, installing new equipment and doing work beyond the capabilities of the crew. Integration between ship, shipyard and contractors is essential to successful execution of maintenance periods, and a focus for everyone involved.
Another transition the crew has had to make is moving Sailors who live on the ship and offices affected by work to a barge moored next to the ship, throughout PIA due to the industrial working environment. The barge can accommodate close to 1,100 people and has about 300 permanent residents right now as well as duty section members. Some departments have moved their entire work centers to the barge.
“It took us about a week to inventory the entire barge,” said Newman. “We had to address all the issues of the facility and how we were going to lay the groundwork for organization. We basically had to move the entire service industry of the entire ship over [to the barge].”
John C. Stennis and PSNS & IMF have a lot of work ahead of them but Agullana thinks they have set themselves up for success.
“I think we’re in a pretty good spot right now,” said Agullana. “I’m confident we’ll be off to a good start.”