Austal Limited (Austal) (ASX:ASB) announced on Thursday that Expeditionary Fast Transport 8 (EPF 8), USNS Yuma has successfully completed U.S. Navy acceptance trials.
The acceptance trials, conducted by the US Navy in the Gulf of Mexico, are the last significant milestone before delivery and involve comprehensive testing of the vessel’s major systems and equipment.
Following confirmation of Yuma’s successful acceptance trials, Austal CEO David Singleton highlighted the significant contribution the versatile EPF platform is making to US Navy operations.
“Just this week, EPF 1 (USNS Spearhead) was deployed as the lead platform for the four month civil-military operation ‘Continuing Promise 2017’, to Guatemala, Honduras and Colombia.
“Conducted by the US Naval Forces Southern Command and US 4th Fleet, the operation includes humanitarian aid and medical missions that will see an estimated 15,000 people treated from January to April 2017, utilising on board and mobile facilities transported by Spearhead.
“The EPF is the ideal platform to deliver critical aid and services to people in remote locations, quickly, professionally and efficiently.” Singleton added.
Following delivery of EPF 8 later this year, Austal USA has a further four expeditionary fast transport vessels on schedule for delivery from its shipyard in Mobile, Alabama, under a 12- ship contract with the U.S. Navy worth over US$1.9 billion.
Final assembly is well underway on City of Bismarck (EPF 9) and modules for Burlington (EPF 10) are under construction in Austal’s module manufacturing facility. The first aluminium for Puerto Rico (EPF 12) was cut on 18th January 2017.