The U.S. Navy’s lead ship in a new class of guided-missile destroyers, the San Diego-based USS Zumwalt, arrived in Ketchikan, Alaska March 23.
“My crew is excited for this outstanding opportunity to visit Ketchikan,” said Capt. Andrew Carlson, Zumwalt’s commanding officer. “Alaska is a strategic location when it comes to maintaining peace and stability in the Indo-Pacific region, and we value Alaskan communities like Ketchikan for their consistent support of our nation’s military.”
During the port visit, Carlson will meet with city of Ketchikan Mayor Lew Williams III, Ketchikan Gateway Borough Mayor David Landis and Native Alaskan tribal communities. The crew will visit the Alaskan port and the Zumwalt will be used to showcase the U.S. Navy’s newest class of guided-missile destroyers.
“I speak for Zumwalt’s entire crew when I say that we are grateful to the citizens of Ketchikan for the warm welcome; we are excited to get out in town, and we are honored to connect this community with its Navy,” Carlson said.
The Zumwalt stop in Ketchikan comes after a visit to the Naval Surface Warfare Center, Caderock Division’s Southeast Alaska Acoustic Measurement Facility. SEAFAC is part of the NSWC network that provides engineering expertise and technical assessment for the Navy’s operational units.
“The facilities and technical expertise of the SEAFAC and Naval Surface Warfare Center personnel are critical components for the continued maturation and ultimately the delivery of Zumwalt capabilities to the fleet commander,” said Carlson.
“SEAFAC absolutely has a significant role in the ship’s development, as do the Alaskan communities of Ketchikan and Saxman that are simultaneously neighbors and hosts for the U.S. Navy. Our country’s global Navy is a success because of local partnerships like this.”
The Zumwalt-class destroyer is designed and built to execute multiple maritime missions including deterrence and power projection. The ships are able to operate in stealthily in both open ocean and shore-adjacent environments, “creating a new level of battlespace complexity for potential adversaries.”
At 610 feet long, it is 100 feet longer and 13 feet wider than the Arleigh Burke-class destroyer and provides the space needed to execute a variety of surface, undersea and aviation missions.
Zumwalt is operated as part of the U.S. Third Fleet, which leads naval forces in the Pacific and provides the realistic, relevant training necessary for an effective global Navy. Third Fleet works with the U.S. Seventh Fleet to plan and execute missions based on their complementary strengths to promote ongoing peace, security, and stability in the Pacific theater of operations.
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