Naval Supply Systems Command (NAVSUP) Fleet Logistics Center (FLC) Yokosuka awarded its second major aircraft maintenance contract of 2020, for its mission partner Fleet Readiness Center (FRC) Western Pacific.
The $278 million, eight-year contract was awarded to Korean Air Lines and will enable FRC Western Pacific to provide the U.S. Navy and Marine Corps with depot-level aviation maintenance and support for the CH-53E Super Stallion and MH-53E Sea Dragon helicopters.
“There is limited organic capability to provide full depot-level repair of H-53 aircraft in this region,” said Capt. Matthew Brickhaus, NAVSUP FLC Yokosuka director of contracting. “This commercial capability provides the Naval Aviation Enterprise the ability to repair these aircraft in theater instead of sending them to the U.S. for maintenance, which would add significant cost and time.”
CH-53 Super Stallion and MH-53E Sea Dragon helicopter presence in the region is important to operational readiness. These aircraft were designed and built to conduct mine countermeasure missions and heavy lift. Four CH-53 Super Stallions recently deployed with USS America (LHA 6) offering heavy lift transport, each with capacities up to 55 troops or 30,000 pounds of cargo in cabin, and up to 36,000 pounds of externally slung cargo.
“The H-53 is a workhorse of an aircraft for both the U.S. Navy and Marine Corps, so it’s important that we get these powerful machines repaired, safely tested, and back into service as quickly as possible,” said FRC Western Pacific Commanding Officer, Cmdr. Randy Berti. “Korean Air Lines has a proven track record meeting required maintenance timelines with exceptional craftsmanship, so it is reassuring to know that FRC Western Pacific will have a quality maintenance partner on the H-53 production line for the better part of the next decade.”
These series of successes in contracting and partnership between NAVSUP FLC Yokosuka and FRC Western Pacific has dramatically enhanced the readiness of U.S. Marine Corps and U.S. Navy aircraft in the Indo-Pacific Region.
“The relationship between FRC Western Pacific and FLC Yokosuka was crucial to the acquisition process for both of the recent contracts awarded,” said Vanessa Schwaner, NAVSUP FLC Yokosuka contracting officer. “Our team was empowered by having the right people, at the right time—allowing for an executable strategy in support of the mission.”
NAVSUP FLC Yokosuka is one of eight FLCs under Commander, NAVSUP. Headquartered in Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania, and employing a diverse, worldwide workforce of more than 22,500 military and civilian personnel, NAVSUP's mission is to provide supplies, services, and quality-of-life support to the Navy and joint warfighter.