US Navy Christens Cargo Ship USNS Benavidez
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US Navy Christens Cargo Ship USNS Benavidez


US Navy Christens Cargo Ship USNS Benavidez

The Navy has christened its newest roll-on/roll-off cargo ship USNS Benavidez at Northrop Grumman Avondale Industries in New Orleans. The new ship was named in honor of Medal of Honor recipient Army Master Sgt. Roy P. Benavidez, who is credited with saving the lives of at least eight men during the Vietnam War. The seventh in the Bob Hope class of large, medium speed, roll-on/roll-off (LMSR) sealift ships, Benavidez is a non-combatant vessel built by Northrop Grumman Avondale Industries in New Orleans. Its crew will consist of civilian mariners who work for a private company under contract to the Military Sealift Command.

The LMSR ships can load military combat and combat support equipment needed overseas and re-supply necessary equipment and supplies. The ship's seven-deck interior has a cargo carrying capacity of approximately 390,000 square feet and its roll-on/roll-off design allows it to transport helicopters, tanks and other wheeled and tracked military vehicles.

Two 110-ton single pedestal twin cranes enable the ship to load and unload cargo where shoreside infrastructure is limited or non-existent. A commercial helicopter deck enables emergency, daytime landings. The USNS Benavidez is 950 feet in length, has a beam of 106 feet, and displaces approximately 62,000 long tons. The diesel-powered ship will be able to sustain speeds up to 24 knots with an endurance range of 13,000 nautical miles.


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