Until further notice — or at least until the ice melts — sailors of the littoral combat ship Little Rock will be calling Montreal home, Navy officials announced today.
The crew“will remain in port Montreal, Canada, until wintry weather conditions improve and the ship is able to safely transit through the St. Lawrence Seaway,” said Lt. Cmdr. Courtney Hillson, spokeswoman for Naval Surface Force Atlantic, in a Jan. 19 release.
The ship was on its way to Mayport, Florida, after being commissioned in Buffalo, New York, on Dec. 16, but record cold and ice has kept the vessel in the Canadian city on the St. Lawrence River since Dec. 27. And signs aren’t promising for getting underway anytime soon.
The ship should have reached its home of Mayport, Florida, by now.
“The temperatures in Montreal and throughout the transit area have been colder than normal, and included near-record low temperatures, which created significant and historical conditions in the late December, early January timeframe,” she said.
Hillson said the Navy has now made the decision to keep the ship in Montreal until waterways are clear in an effort to ensure safety.
The delays, however, shouldn’t hamper the ship’s operational schedule.
“While in port, the crew of Little Rock will continue to focus on training, readiness and certifications,” she said.
Little Rock will continue the transit to her homeport of Mayport, Florida, when weather and seaway conditions permit.