The U.S. Navy’s amphibious transport dock ship USS San Diego (LPD 22), part of the Makin Island Amphibious Ready Group (ARG), returned to sea fully mission capable, Mar. 11, the U.S. Central Command announced.
San Diego was pierside in the Kingdom of Bahrain for a scheduled logistics and maintenance port call when approximately twenty Sailors and embarked Marines tested positive for COVID-19.
The port visit and medical support were coordinated with the host nation government and Bahrain Ministry of Health.
“The professionalism and support from the Kingdom of Bahrain, Task Force 51/5, and U.S. 5th Fleet Medical was top notch,” said Capt. Kevin Ralston, the commanding officer. “San Diego is extremely thankful for their unwavering support and assistance during our time pierside.”
While pierside, all personnel who tested positive for COVID-19 or were identified as close contacts were isolated on board. The ship has a robust medical capability, including embarked medical staff, operating rooms, a 24-bed hospital ward and additional overflow capacity.
USS San Diego:
USS San Diego (LPD-22), a San Antonio-class amphibious transport dock, is the fourth ship of the United States Navy to be named for San Diego, California.
The ship was designed to provide the Navy and U.S. Marine Corps with modern, sea-based platforms that are networked, survivable, and built to operate with 21st century transformational platforms, such as the MV-22 Osprey, the (since canceled) Expeditionary Fighting Vehicle (EFV), air-cushioned landing craft (LCACs), and future means by which marines are delivered ashore. The ship is more than 45 percent larger than the Austin class, displacing more than 25,000 tons at full load. It carries fewer troops but has twice as much space for vehicles, landing craft, and aircraft.
San Diego has been deployed since January in the U.S. 5th Fleet area of operations (AOO), along with the amphibious assault ship USS Makin Island (LHD 8), amphibious transport dock ship USS Somerset (LPD 25), and the 15th Marine Expeditionary Unit (15th MEU).
“We will continue to take all preventative measures in our fight against COVID-19,” said Ralston. “San Diego’s Sailors and Marines are extremely resilient and are ready to take on any and all assigned missions at sea.”
San Diego will rejoin the Makin Island ARG, ready for assigned tasking, continuing to support U.S. Central Command’s mission and our regional and coalition partners.