7th Fleet Maintenance and Sustainment Summit Expands on Deployed Capabilities

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Story Number: NNS140816-02Release Date: 8/16/2014 9:01:00 AM

By Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Zac Shea, USS Frank Cable Public Affairs

SANTA RITA, Guam (NNS) -- More than 20 participants, both military and civilian, attended 7th Fleet Maintenance and Overseas Sustainment Summit hosted on board the submarine tender USS Frank Cable (AS 40) in Santa Rita, Guam, Aug. 11 through Aug. 13.

Opened by remarks from Vice Adm. Robert L. Thomas Jr., commander, U.S. 7th Fleet, the summit provided briefs, tours and contingency scenarios for all maintenance stakeholders in the 7th Fleet as a way to exchange ideas and strategies to improve maintenance capabilities in 7th Fleet.

Key topics included maximizing logistics in war game scenarios, diving and salvage operations, and submarine and shipboard maintenance from both the Fleet and unit perspectives.

"The purpose was to bring together everyone related to surface ship and submarine maintenance; to discuss and share what capabilities they bring to the force and also to learn from each other," said Capt. John Brughelli, assistant chief of staff for logistics at Commander, U.S. 7th Fleet. "We've already got a great system out here providing maintenance and sustainment support to our units but we want to optimize everybody's capabilities, integrate better, and communicate better to make them a more ready force to support the 7th Fleet commander's mission."

The three day summit allowed for a diverse group of maintenance brokers from various commands and platforms throughout the Pacific to exchange ideas and strategies.

"The 7th Fleet maintenance summit was a big success," said Capt. Mark Benjamin, commanding officer of Frank Cable. "Its charter is to confirm, verify and plan to sustain maintenance and logistics in the Western Pacific during a wartime scenario where we could provide resupply, rearmament and repair to any battle damage."

Over the years the summit has been held at various locations throughout the 7th Fleet area of responsibility to give a more hands on experience.

"Going to different locations throughout the theater allows people to do on-site visits and see maintenance on the deckplate," said Brughelli. "It's been a great location to visit and have the opportunity to view what's possible here as far as maintenance. Frank Cable is a critical platform for supporting and sustaining the force."

In addition to providing a chance for maintenance brokers to plan and network, the summit gave Frank Cable a chance to demonstrate and possibly expand their role in repair.

"I would like for the summit participants to take away an appreciation for Frank Cable's extensive repair capabilities and my standing offer to utilize these capabilities to repair surface ships of the U.S. Navy and the navies of our allies and partners," said Benjamin. "I also expect to communicate Frank Cable's capabilities to those outside the submarine lifelines in order to facilitate future maintenance opportunities on surface platforms to include the Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) class."

The summit included a guided tour of the Cabras Marine Corporation's Pacific Dry-dock and Integrated Maintenance Ship Repair Facility (PACDIM SRF), located in Apra Harbor, Guam.

"We're taking away a lot from the summit. There's a lot of capability out here and we're making good use of it but we know there are some areas where we can improve and push our limits," said Brughelli.

The 7th Fleet's area of responsibility encompasses more than 48 million square miles, 36 maritime countries, and contains half of the world's population.

Frank Cable, forward deployed to the island of Guam, conducts maintenance and support of submarines and surface vessels deployed in the U.S 7th Fleet area of responsibility.

For more information on Frank Cable, visit www.cable.navy.mil.

For more news from USS Frank Cable (AS 40), visit www.navy.mil/local/as40/.

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