LPD-17 Reliability Issues Surface AgainAug 08, 2012 13:20 UTC
Problems with USS New York [LPD 21] reportedly have the US Navy scrutinizing every ship built in the class’ 2 shipyards. Unfortunately, it’s just the latest installment in a long string of basic workmanship issues. In March 2005, “Cost Overruns, Budget Uncertainties Hurting USN and Contractors” noted:
“With the help of a $50 million grant from the state of Louisiana, Northrop Grumman has modernized production at Avondale, and the company is now projecting completion of future amphibious ships at a much faster pace than in the past. Nevertheless, scathing Navy inspector general reviews that detailed shoddy construction and basic workmanship problems at Avondale are cause for legitimate concern in areas that will not be fixed by modernization alone.”
While some teething problems are common for first ships of a new class, The new San Antonio Class stands out for their number and severity. All in a ship whose costs rose from about $700 million when the program was sold, to over $1.7 billion – then stayed at that drastically elevated level through subsequent vessels.