US Navy forms Western Pacific fleet readiness oversight body

Illustration: US Navy photo of two forward-deployed cruisers and a destroyer at destroyer at Yokosuka, Japan

The US Navy has established a new detachment which will help keep track of unit readiness in the US 7th Fleet.

Detachment (Det) Naval Surface Group Western Pacific (NSGWP), set up by US Pacific Fleet (CPF) Commander Adm. Scott Swift on October 31, will oversee the training and certification of forward deployed surface ships with the authority to determine if a ship is ready for operations.

US 7th Fleet (C7F) will assign ships that are among forward deployed naval forces-Japan (FDNF-J) to CPF Det NSGWP during maintenance availabilities and follow-on training, and CPF Det NSGWP will support C7F by making those ships ready for operational tasking.

“I am forming CPF Detachment Naval Surface Group Western Pacific to address an organizational gap in FDNF-J that allowed a culture to grow myopically focused on operations to the detriment of readiness,” Swift said. “CPF Det NSGWP will consolidate authorities to oversee the training and certification of surface ships forward deployed to Japan.”

The new organization will report to Swift in the beginning before eventually falling under Vice Adm. Tom Rowden, commander, US Naval Surface Forces (CNSF). CPF Det NSGWP will be the initial fleet commander representative until the permanent establishment of CNSF Group WESTPAC.

“CPF Det NSGWP will be my eyes and ears on the ground here in the Western Pacific,” said Rowden. “Not only to consider the operations we have to execute, but also to ensure we understand how we are going to properly generate the readiness we need.”

CPF Det NSGWP will be headed by a post major command 0-6 officer. US Navy Capt. Rich Dromerhauser will be the first commodore of the organization and will be responsible for the manning, training and equipping of the FDNF-J surface ships.

“I am here to protect the most precious resource we have – time; time for the maintenance and modernization of our systems and time for the focused training that builds the confidence and competence to fight and win at sea,” said Dromerhauser.

“This is about taking care of our entire Navy family and ensuring that they have the resources and tools to get the job done right.”

CPF Det NSGWP will have the authority to determine that a ship is ready for operations, or conversely, not certified for operations and requires remedial training.

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