Navy Terminates Littoral Combat Ship (LCS 4) Contract
Thu, 1 Nov 2007 10:31:00 -0500
IMMEDIATE RELEASE No. 1269-07
November 01, 2007
Navy Terminates Littoral Combat Ship (LCS 4) ContractSecretary of the Navy Donald C. Winter and Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Gary Roughead announced today that the Department of the Navy is terminating construction of the fourth littoral combat ship (LCS 4) for convenience under the termination clause of the contract because the Navy and General Dynamics could not reach agreement on the terms of a modified contract.The Navy had not yet authorized construction on LCS 4, following a series of cost overruns on LCS 2. The Navy intended to begin construction of LCS 4 if the Navy and General Dynamics could agree on the terms for a fixed-price incentive agreement. The Navy worked closely with General Dynamics to try to restructure the agreement for LCS 4 to more equitably balance cost and risk, but could not come to terms and conditions that were acceptable to both parties.The Navy remains committed to the LCS program. "LCS continues to be a critical warfighting requirement for our Navy to maintain dominance in the littorals and strategic choke points around the world," said Winter. "While this is a difficult decision, we recognize that active oversight and strict cost controls in the early years are necessary to ensuring we can deliver these ships to the fleet over the long term.""I am absolutely committed to the Littoral Combat Ship," said Roughead. "We need this ship. It is very important that our acquisition efforts produce the right littoral combat ship capability to the fleet at the right cost."
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01 November 2007
If you can't build it...
The Navy, like a most of the military, is keen to be efficient. Whether it is in the prosecution of a mission or the acquisition of a weapons system. I am pleased to see the cancellation of LCS 4. I am NOT a fan of the littoral ship program. I think there are conventional systems already available which will more than meet the need of the Navy in this regard. Specifically, these systems are currently called "helicopters". They can operate with little regard to sea state, can remain on station for sufficient periods of time and have the capability to avoid pesky hazards like mines.
The Coast Guard uses helicopters to great effect in the littorals. The Navy needs to look at their model and adopt the same. We could quickly deploy air assets against a small waterborne threat and actually interdict them, vice trying to move (even at 50 kts) a 1000ton vessel.