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Hospital ship USNS Mercy activated to help with typhoon relief

By Star-Advertiser staff

LAST UPDATED: 11:05 a.m. HST, Nov 14, 2013

U.S. Pacific Fleet at Pearl Harbor ordered the activation Wednesday of the hospital ship USNS Mercy to be ready to support ongoing disaster relief efforts in the Philippines in the wake of Typhoon Haiyan.

The San Diego-based ship has been in a reduced operating status, a normal occurrence for a hospital ship, the Navy said. The activation order accelerates Mercy's ability to attain full operating status to include moving necessary personnel and equipment to the ship.

If ordered to deploy, Mercy would get underway in the next several days and could arrive in the Philippines sometime in December, joining other U.S. Pacific Fleet units already providing assistance, the Navy said.

The collection of Navy ships, including the aircraft carrier USS George Washington and her escorts, will provide food and water, the capability to move relief supplies to isolated areas, and to help move the badly injured for medical care, Pacific Fleet said.

In 2012, Mercy participated in the annual Pacific Partnership mission, which included working with Philippine authorities in the vicinity of Tacloban, the area hardest hit by Typhoon Haiyan.

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localguy wrote:
Kind of day late and dollar short for the bureaucrats in charge of the hospital ship. It should have been activated as soon as the super storm was going to hit the Philippines, not a week later. What happened to advance planning?
on November 13,2013 | 06:36PM
Bdpapa wrote:
It takes a lot of time to deploy this ship. It is slow moving and cumbersome. Thie helps stability and patient care. It will be a very valuable asset once it gets there.
on November 13,2013 | 07:52PM
samidunn wrote:
We would be there already if they hadn't forced us out of Subic Bay.
on November 14,2013 | 09:30AM
steveoctober wrote:
They keep it in reduced status to save taxpayer money. So unless you want to pay more taxes to help another country, it's fine the way it is and the bureaucrats should be commended.
on November 14,2013 | 02:28AM
samidunn wrote:
Gotta save that money so we can send it to Pakistan.
on November 14,2013 | 09:24AM
salsacoquibx wrote:
Funny, I dont see any other country rushing in to help either..kind off a dumb comment. Help is help..advance planning for what? The US is using OUR resources to help in this tragedy..like WE always do. They already deployed ships in the area, which is already commendable.
on November 14,2013 | 05:28AM
Gonefishin wrote:
Japan, Canada, Singapore, Thailand, Australia are all there providing relief. This has not been reported in the SA or other U.S. newspapers.
on November 14,2013 | 06:14AM
samidunn wrote:
Hawaiian should fly a relief flight there. Good PR, especially since they just stopped flying to Manila. I'm guessing under pressure from their government.
on November 14,2013 | 09:22AM
juscasting wrote:
I thought we were still going through sequestration or is it constipation?
on November 14,2013 | 10:11AM
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