The U.S. Navy’s third littoral combat ship USS Fort Worth (LCS 3) arrived in Phuket, Thailand for the first time December 30 for a scheduled port visit.
The ship’s crew participated in a community service event, and the ship’s Morale, Welfare and Recreation (MWR) program representative informed Sailors about opportunities for tours.
William Petri, Fort Worth’s MWR representative, explained: “One of the advantages of LCS is that we have a small crew and it opens up more affordable and diverse options when we pull into port because we don’t need to book tours for large groups of Sailors. Unlike larger platforms, we have a relatively smaller footprint and that allows us to collectively experience more.”
In an effort to increase integration between the U.S. and partner nations in Southeast Asia, Fort Worth embarked one naval officer from Sri Lanka and one coast guard officer from the Maldives prior to making the transit to Phuket. The embarked officers stood watch with the crew of Fort Worth and participated in underway operations, gaining firsthand knowledge of what life is like on the Navy’s newest class of ship.
Fort Worth is the second LCS to deploy as part of an initiative for up to four rotational deployments of these ships simultaneously to U.S. 7th Fleet in the coming years. Fast, agile and mission-focused, littoral combat ships are designed to operate in near shore environments and employ modular mission packages that can be configured for surface warfare, mine countermeasures or anti-submarine warfare.