News

Navy Ships Wasp, Oak Hill Departing From Hurricane Relief Duty

Oct. 26, 2017 , DOD News
You have accessed part of a historical collection on defense.gov. Some of the information contained within may be outdated and links may not function. Please contact the DOD Webmaster with any questions.

The Navy’s multipurpose amphibious assault ship USS Wasp and the dock landing ship USS Oak Hill are departing from Hurricanes Irma and Maria relief duty in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands, according to a Defense Department news release issued today.

Sailors escort a patient on a ship for transport to a hospital.
Sailors escort a patient on the USNS Comfort, a hospital ship in the Caribbean Sea, Oct. 22, 2017, to an MH-60S Seahawk helicopter for transport to a hospital in San Juan, Puerto Rico. Troops are providing humanitarian relief following Hurricane Maria. Navy photo by Petty Officer 1st Class Ernest R. Scott
Sailors escort a patient on a ship for transport to a hospital.
Sailor Escort
Sailors escort a patient on the USNS Comfort, a hospital ship in the Caribbean Sea, Oct. 22, 2017, to an MH-60S Seahawk helicopter for transport to a hospital in San Juan, Puerto Rico. Troops are providing humanitarian relief following Hurricane Maria. Navy photo by Petty Officer 1st Class Ernest R. Scott
Photo By: Petty Officer 1st Class Ernest R. Scott
VIRIN: 171022-N-ZN152-0084F

As part of the plan to transition from hurricane response to hurricane recovery in the two U.S. territories, the release said, the DoD and the Federal Emergency Management Agency determined, in consultation with Puerto Rico Gov. Ricardo Rossello, that some military-sourced assets, such as the Wasp and Oak Hill, are no longer needed.

Saving Lives

The Wasp and Oak Hill “have provided great value to the overall response effort, contributing search and rescue capabilities that saved lives. They are now proceeding on to their next missions in defense of our nation,” the release said.

The ships’ principle contribution to the hurricane relief effort has been helicopter support, the release said.

FEMA and DoD have determined there are sufficient land-based helicopters and tilt-rotor capabilities in the territories to continue helping the people of Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands as they recover, the release said.