Naval Station Mayport Sends Ships to Sea Ahead of Hurricane Irma

As a precautionary measure, U.S. Navy ships home ported at Naval Station Mayport are getting underway in anticipation of Hurricane Irma.

170907-N-N0101-001 ATLANTIC OCEAN (Sept. 7, 2017) A GOES satellite image taken Sept. 7, 2017 at 8:45 a.m. EST shows Hurricane Irma, center, and Hurricane Jose, right, in the Atlantic Ocean, and Hurricane Katia in the Gulf of Mexico. Hurricane Irma is a category 5 hurricane with sustained winds of more than 180 mph and is moving west-northwest at 17 mph. the storm is expected to impact the southeastern United States. (U.S. Navy photo/Released)

The following ships headed to sea September 6: USS Shamal, USS The Sullivans, USS Bulkeley And USCGC Tahoma.

USS Philippine Sea, USS Farragut and USS Lassen are scheduled to depart September 7.

USS Hue City, USS Tornado and USS Roosevelt will be moved to a safe haven location and made ready for heavy weather.

USS Detroit and USS Milwaukee will both remain in port and will be heavy weather moored.

170906-N-PQ607-031 MAYPORT, Fla. (Sep. 6, 2017) Command Master Chief Johannes Gonzales, left, and Logistics Specialist 1st Class Jesus Manriquez, both assigned to U.S. Naval Forces Southern Command/U.S. 4th Fleet, stack sand bags into a truck for use around headquarters buildings in preparation for Hurricane Irma. (U.S. Navy photo by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Michael Hendricks/Released)

The decision to sortie is based on concerns for the safety of sailors and preservation of the ships and associated equipment.

Navy vessels can remain safe at sea by maneuvering to avoid storms altogether. Additionally, having ships underway ensures they are ready to respond to any national tasking if required.