Her escorts meanwhile – the US Destroyer USS Truxtun and the Spanish Frigate SPS Almirante don Juan de Borbon – begin sailing from the Nab to Outer Spit Boy at 0745. They should pass the Round Tower at around 0845 and 0900 respectively. The Truxtun will be mooring at Middle Slip Jetty and will be visible from the Gosport Waterfront, while the Borbon will be on North Corner Jetty – visible from up the Harbour, including on top of Portsdown Hill for those with decent lenses.
Meanwhile HMS Westminster and HMS Dauntless, who have been on exercise with the US and Spanish ships, will be arriving at about 0915 and 1015 respectively.
Wondering where all these places are? Click here.
All in all a very busy day in Pompey, and an excellent time to go on a harbour tour, as we have all three Type 45’s in, a US Arleigh Burke, and a Spanish Alvaro de Bazan.
If anyone stateside is worried about security of the US ships, I’ll quote this from the Queens Harbour Master of Portsmouth:
- NOTICE IS HEREBY GIVEN by the Queen’s Harbour Master Portsmouth that between 27 and 31 May 2011 a nuclear powered military warship will conduct a formal visit to Portsmouth. During this period, the nuclear vessel will be anchored at “C Anchorage” in the Central Solent.
- Mariners are advised that the nuclear vessel is deemed to be “a vessel constrained by her draught” as defined under the International Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea (COLREGS Rule 3(f) and 18) and is to be considered a vessel which can safely navigate only within a narrow channel or fairway (COLREGS Rule 9) at all times when underway within the Dockyard Port of Portsmouth.
- Mariners are further advised that LNTM 07/11 (Dormant Exclusion Zone for Underway Warships) will be activated for the entry and departure of the nuclear vessel. In summary all vessels except those involved in the escort are to remain 250 metres clear of the nuclear vessel whilst it is underway. VTS Southampton, acting with QHM’s authority, will direct commercial traffic to keep outside this zone. Warning broadcasts will be made on VHF Channels 11, 12 and 16 as appropriate and the escort vessels will show blue flashing lights.
- Whilst at anchor there will be a 250 metre Exclusion Zone in place around the nuclear vessel, which will be enforced by Ministry of Defence Police. Only vessels authorised by QHM will be allowed to enter this zone.
- For the duration of the visit, miscellaneous service craft will be berthed alongside the nuclear vessel and mariners passing C Anchorage should amend their passage plans to ensure they avoid the restricted area. Vessels navigating in the vicinity are to maintain a listening watch on VHF and are to be aware of the effects of their wake and are to reduce speed accordingly.
And here’s some coverage in the local press:
- USS George H.W. Bush – Navy’s newest supercarrier departs on maiden voyage (gcaptain.com)
- USS George H.W. Bush Departs for Maiden Deployment (waronterrornews.typepad.com)
- Female Navy Admiral to Command Carrier Strike Group (peregrine5700.wordpress.com)
- Navy’s new carrier to make 1st combat deployment (seattletimes.nwsource.com)