Personnel from the Naval Surface Warfare Center, Panama City Division are delivering emergency supplies to Haiti and they are using one of the most sophisticated vessels in the world.
As the tranquil sun sets here in Northwest Florida; countless people in the Caribbean are struggling for their lives. When disaster struck Haiti on January 12 , the nation quickly pulled together to help. Crews from the Naval Surface Warfare Center Panama City Division, or NSWC PCD, received orders to ship out.
Not even a week later, a U.S. Navy Fleet departed from Norfolk, Virginia in a 'Landing Craft Air Cushion, or LCAC.
The role of the LCAC in each mission is to transport weapon systems, equipment, cargo and personnel from ship to shore. "We provide heavy moving equipment, food, water, and I think those efforts will really make a difference," said Adkins.
The sophisticated amphibious hovercraft is well suited for humanitarian missions; LCAC's can hover effortlessly over land and sea, allowing them to maneuver in the most treacherous conditions.
The LCAC's were first developed at NSWC PC more than 25 years ago. "It makes us feel good to know that we can help provide aid like this in such a short notice," said Robert Adkins, Fleet Support Manager for the In-service Engineering Agency at NSWC PCD.
While the Navy's fleet of more than 70 LCAC’s are deployed around the world, the fleet support team that operates and maintains them are located right here at NSWC PCD. "We help out with any logistical issues that may arise, materials that can become obsolete; we are here to help," said Glenn Campbell, Project Engineer of LCAC Operations.
The technicians are experts in their area of support and will be communicating with the fleet during the LCAC deployment for Haiti relief operations. The NSWC PC will monitor the L-CAC and its crew through out the deployment.