PHOTO: USS Washington christened

Elisabeth Mabus, daughter of Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus, smashed a bottle of sparkling wine across the bow of Virginia-class submarine Washington (SSN 787) March 5. Image: John Whalen/HII
Image: John Whalen/HII

U.S. Navy’s 14th Virginia-class submarine, USS Washington (SSN 787), was christened at Newport News Shipbuilding, a division of Huntington Ingalls Industries on March 5.

Ship sponsor Elisabeth Mabus, daughter of Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus, smashed a bottle of sparkling wine across the bow to mark the christening of the submarine named for the Evergreen State.

“It seems amazing that only a year and a half ago we were laying the keel,” Elisabeth said. “It is a testament to the work at Newport News and Electric Boat that we are back here so soon to christen the newest member of the fleet.”

Secretary Mabus highlighted the award of 10 Virginia-class submarines in the Block IV contract, the largest shipbuilding contract in U.S. Navy history, and the cost savings associated with it. The nearly $18 billion deal was awarded for the construction of 10 additional nuclear-powered Virginia-class submarines.

Washington will be the seventh Virginia-class submarine delivered by Newport News. Construction began in September 2011, marking the beginning of the two-submarines-per-year build plan between Newport News and General Dynamics Electric Boat.

According to HHI, the submarine is on track to be delivered in 2016.

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