November 2, 2018 – USS Ashland (LSD 48) with embarked Marines from Combat Logistics Battalion (CLB) 31 arrived in vicinity of the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI), Nov. 3, to provide Department of Defense support to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and civil and local officials as part of the FEMA-supported Typhoon Yutu recovery effort.
“Our main priority is to work with our leadership and local officials in alleviating as much suffering as possible in CMNI,” said Cmdr. Patrick L. German, Ashland’s commanding officer. “Our advance party has surveyed the area and identified a safe debarkation point for Marines, Sailors and equipment going ashore via our landing craft.”
Sailors from Naval Beach Unit (NBU) 7 will be using landing craft, utilities (LCU) to deliver Sailors and Marines along with trucks and supplies to support local relief efforts. They will assist in the clearing of debris and protecting property for the people of CMNI.
“We have over 120 Sailors and Marines going ashore to provide assistance,” said Staff Sgt. Denzel Youngblood, assigned to CLB 31. “In addition we will be providing over 4,800 gallons of water, 5,400 gallons of fuel, tents, generators, air conditioning units, vehicles, and equipment to help with cleaning and moving debris.”
Ashland, part of the Wasp Amphibious Ready Group, is forward deployed to Sasebo, Japan. CLB 31, part of the 31st Marine Expeditionary Unit, is forward deployed to Okinawa, Japan. Both units are assigned to U.S. 7th Fleet’s Commander, Amphibious Force 7th Fleet.