Tortuga Embarks Expeditionary Units to Perform Rescue, Salvage Operations
PACIFIC OCEAN - A mobile salvage unit and naval construction regiment arrived aboard the amphibious transport dock ship USS Tortuga (LSD 46) on March 29 to conduct port clearing operations along the northeastern coastline of Japan, in support of Operation Tomodachi.
Explosive Ordnance Disposal Mobile Unit Five (EODMU) 5 and Underwater Construction Team Two (UCT) 2 are working in cooperation with the crew of rescue and salvage ship USNS Safeguard (T-ARS 50) and the government of Japan.
“Each of the Sailors selected for this mission are motivated to support the people of Japan as they recover from this tragic event,” said Ensign Raymond Dennis. “As long as the U.S. Navy and the Japanese government need port clearance services, we’re going to help.”
Sailors from the commands are clearing and removing debris left behind in the waterways from the 9.0 magnitude earthquake and subsequent tsunami that hit Japan, March 11.
After their arrival, Sailors from UCT 2 scanned the sea floor for debris, surrounding the port of Miyako in the Iwate Prefecture, using a side-scanning sonar technology.
The scans create a 3-D image of the underwater landscape, allowing dive teams to identify obstacles and develop a plan of action, before a U.S. Navy diver enters the water.