The next-generation Austal-built LCS has officially entered service with the US Navy.
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The USS Savannah (LCS 28) was welcomed as the newest Independence variant littoral combat ship (LCS) during a commissioning ceremony on Saturday (5 February) in Brunswick, Georgia.
The ceremony was attended by senior US Navy representatives, including Vice Admiral Carl Chebi, Commander, Naval Air Systems Command, who was joined by Larry Ryder, vice president of Business development and external affairs, Austal USA.
The ship’s sponsor, Dianne Davison Isakson, wife of the late former senator from Georgia, Johnny Isakson, issued the first order to “man our ship and bring her to life” as per the tradition.
“The city of Savannah, Georgia, has played an important role in our nation’s naval history,” Secretary of the Navy Carlos Del Toro said.
“I have no doubt the Sailors of USS Savannah (LCS 28) will carry on the fighting spirit of this city and will play an important role in the defence of our nation and maritime freedom.”
USS Savannah, which will be homeported at Naval Base San Diego, California, is the 14th Independence variant LCS and the sixth ship to bear its name.
The LCS Class vessel — which consists of two variants, the Freedom and the Independence, designed and built by Lockheed Martin and Austal USA, respectively — is billed as a fast, agile, mission-focused platform designed to operate in near-shore environments, countering coastal threats.
The vessels are built to support forward presence, maritime security, sea control and deterrence.
The commissioning of USS Savannah follows Austal USA’s delivery of USS Canberra in December.
This was the last LCS delivered to the US military in 2021, with the future USS Santa Barbara and USS Augusta launched but yet to be commissioned.
The future USS Kingsville and USS Pierre are still under construction.