Sailors scrub the flight deck of USS George Washington (CVN 73) after an aqueous film forming foam (AFFF) system check, June 22. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Michelle N. Rasmusson)

PACIFIC OCEAN - The U.S. Navy's forward-deployed aircraft carrier USS George Washington (CVN 73) completed sea trials June 23 in preparation for its upcoming 2013 patrol. Sea trials is a series of graded evolutions that assesses the ship's equipment status and personnel readiness for follow on at-sea training.

"Air department had a positive sea trials," said Chief Aviation Boatswain's Mate Jonard Sygaco. "It took a collective effort from all divisions to conduct the [aqueous film forming foam] counter measure washdown, and catapult and fuel system certifications. This was a testament to the hard work of our young Sailors."

George Washington's 20 departments all contributed to the successful execution of sea trials.

"At the beginning of sea trials, Deck department brought the starboard [rigid inflatable boat] RIB back aboard. That's a big evolution that takes a lot of manning to handle the lines," said Boatswain's Mate 1st Class Rashaun Williams, from Uniondale, N.Y. "We have a lot of new crew members, who are really excited and eager to learn new things. This was an outstanding opportunity to show them what to expect during patrol."

More than 900 Sailors joined the George Washington crew this year. Sea trials was the first opportunity for many of them to see what type of work they will perform at sea.

"Our new Sailors are doing extremely well," said George Washington's Command Master Chief Shaun Brahmsteadt. "Their willingness to learn is impressive; they're asking a lot of questions, which keeps me on my toes. I'm happy with the current state of the crew."

Sea trials physically and mentally challenged the crew after an extensive, in-port maintenance period. "Sea trials went phenomenally," said Brahmsteadt. "Crew morale was high and they executed the evolutions admirably."

George Washington and its embarked air wing, Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 5, provide a combat-ready force that protects and defends the collective maritime interest of the U.S. and its allies and partners in the Indo-Asia-Pacific region.