USS Makin Island (LHD 8) completed its Mid-Cycle Inspection (MCI) April 24.Naval sea commands undergo MCI approximately once every two-to-three years to assess the material condition of the ship between Board of Inspection and Survey (INSURV) inspections, which occur every five years.
“Makin Island is a fairly new big-deck amphibious assault ship and our goal is to ensure this ship’s lifespan lasts long enough to support fleet needs,” said Makin Island’s Command Master Chief (SW/AW) Thomas Moore. These mid-cycle inspections allow us to keep the same momentum in our routine maintenance and material conditioning as we would in preparing for INSURV.”
Forty-five inspectors from Commander Naval Surface Forces (CNSF) Type Commander Material Inspection Team (TMIT) boarded Makin Island to conduct inspections of the ship’s propulsion systems, deck equipment, damage control, combat systems, and aviation equipment.
“We inspect everything, every nook and cranny,” said Senior Chief Damage Controlman (SW) Amanda Fraser, a TMIT damage control inspector. “We’re checking to make sure all the gear is good to go, the Sailors are maintaining it and it works the way it’s supposed to work.”
Inspectors observed crewmembers conducting various shipboard evolutions including anchor drop testing, small boat operations and full-power propulsion runs.
“A lot of long hours, dry-runs and in-house inspections have gone into preparing for MCI to make sure that we’re where we need to be and our equipment is good to go,” said Damage Controlman 1st Class (SW) Richard Neal, Makin Island’s Engineering Repair Division Four leading petty officer.
Many of the ship’s compartments were also inspected for occupational health and safety.
“We’ve been making sure all of our admin is in order, painting, priming, needle gunning; you know the usual Sailor thing,” said Aviation Ordnanceman 1st Class (AW) Kathryn Wesson, of Makin Island’s weapons department.
Chief Fire Controlman Chris Masciovecchio, a TMIT weapons inspector, commented while inspecting Makin Island’s ammunitions lockers.
“So far so good,” said Masciovecchio.
Fraser spoke about the importance of MCI while she was inspecting self-contained breathing apparatus bottles and face masks.
“These inspections ensure general functionality of the ship’s equipment,” said Fraser. “The day our Sailors need to use their equipment is not the day they should find out whether it works or not.
Press Release, April 25, 2014; Image: US Navy