An official website of the United States government
Here's how you know
A .mil website belongs to an official U.S. Department of Defense organization in the United States.
A lock (lock ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .mil website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

Home : Media : News : News Article View
NEWS | Oct. 27, 2020

US Seabee Divers Complete Infrastructure Assessment of Tinian Harbor

By Petty Officer 2nd Class Cole Pielop

TINIAN, Northern Mariana Islands -- In the middle of the Pacific lies an island surrounded with crystal-clear water, rich with military history. A small team of U.S. Navy Seabee underwater construction divers deployed from Task Force 75 completed, Oct 13, a maritime infrastructure assessment (MIA) of the Port of Tinian.

The underwater construction team performed a multi-week assessment that included a Level II underwater inspection of all berths, ramps, connecting piers and navigational buoys. In addition, they completed a bathymetric survey spanning more than three square nautical miles, surrounding waterfront facilities topside inspections, and a multimodal assessment of the roads connecting the airport and seaport. Using their underwater tools and expertise, the Seabees were able to locate critical areas for repair that were damaged from years of typhoons and deterioration sustained since its original construction in 1945.

“The MIA is just the beginning for the work here in Tinian,” said Lt. j.g. Joshua Jepsen, officer in charge of the detachment. “As our assessment is finalized, we will be able to prioritize areas for repair and return with the resources needed to break ground on the port. After our time in Tinian, follow-on detachments will continue to return to meet the ultimate goal - a fully operational and maintained port.”

Maritime infrastructure assessments are a re-occurring job for the Seabee divers during their Indo-Pacific deployment to clear the way for underwater construction. They have been sent to conduct comprehensive assessments in places such as the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, Federated States of Micronesia, Japan, and other areas in the Indo-Pacific.

The overall goal for the Port of Tinian is to improve the waterfront infrastructure, giving them a product that is fully functional, long-lasting, and able to support a diverse amount of maritime operations in a free and open Indo-Pacific.

“I have been to a few of these islands that have so much history rooted in World War II and it's always a humbling experience to visit these places, and reflect on the challenges and hardships that they must’ve faced back then,” said Builder 2nd Class Eli Arwood, project supervisor.

The port repair plan will maintain U.S. Indo-Pacific Command as the most agile, adaptable, and aggressive major combat operation engineering force in the Indo-Pacific Region. The inspection and follow on harbor improvements will enable the U.S. Navy to maintain its robust operating capability and enhance its lethality if called upon. The dive detachment was the first team to begin the major project, which supports U.S. Pacific Fleet and U.S. Marine Corps Forces, Pacific during exercise Valiant Shield, an annual, U.S.-only forces exercise focused on joint training in a blue-water environment.

“I think we are fortunate to be able to meet and interact with the people who are affected by what we are doing,” said Arwood. “Not everyone gets to see and know who they are impacting with their work. The people of Tinian have all been very welcoming and I think it's been a pleasure for all of us.”

The underwater construction team’s overall mission is to conduct expeditionary, inshore, waterfront, and underwater deep ocean facility construction, inspection, repair, and maintenance operations. They are able to conduct amphibious landing support for joint logistics over-the-shore operations, including humanitarian assistance, civic assistance and underwater recovery operations.

“For the maritime infrastructure assessment, operating within a global pandemic was definitely a challenge and has been since the start of our deployment,” said Jepsen. “Despite these abnormal conditions, my team was able to show up, hit the ground running, and execute. For that, I could not ask much more.”

Task Force 75 is 7th Fleet's primary expeditionary task force and is responsible for the planning and execution of maritime security operations, explosive ordnance disposal, diving, engineering and construction, and underwater construction. It additionally provides direct support to diving and salvage operations and expeditionary intelligence throughout the Indo-Pacific region.



US Army sustainers provide sealift to Australian armor for Super Garuda Shield
Australian Army M1A1 Abrams main battle tanks and vehicles are unloaded from the United States Army Vessel SSGT Robert T. Kuroda at Tanjung Perak Port in Indonesia during Exercise Super Garuda Shield 2023. At the invitation of Indonesian Armed Forces (TNI), Australia is contributing over 125 personnel from the Australian Defence Force (ADF) to Exercise Super Garuda Shield 2023 (SGS23). SGS23 is an TNI and United States Indo Pacific Command led bilateral training activity. It is focused on joint operations with international partners in and around East Java in Indonesia from 31 August to 13 September. Held since 2009, the ADF first participated in 2022, and in 2023 is contributing an Australian Army force element including a Troop of M1A1 Abrams tanks from the 1st Armoured Regiment. The contingent also includes an Infantry Platoon from the 10th/27th Battalion, Royal South Australian Regiment, command and control elements, and a range of armoured vehicles, trucks and recovery vehicles. (Photo by Australian Defence Force Cpl. Dustin Anderson)
Sept. 19, 2023 - With Logistics Support Vessel 7 SSGT Robert Kuroda already in Australia for Talisman Sabre 2023, the conditions were set to transport Australian Defence Force tanks and equipment to Indonesia for Super Garuda Shield...

Statement from Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre on the U.S.-Pacific Islands Forum Summit
Sept. 19, 2023 - President Joseph R. Biden, Jr. will host Pacific Islands Forum (PIF) leaders at the White House on September 25, 2023 during the second U.S.-Pacific Island Forum (PIF) Summit taking place September 25-26...

Joint Press Statement for the 23rd Korea-U.S. Integrated Defense Dialogue
Sept. 18, 2023 - The U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) and the Republic of Korea (ROK) Ministry of National Defense (MND) held the 23rd Korea-U.S. Integrated Defense Dialogue (KIDD) on September 18, 2023 in Seoul...

Army Reserve Cyber Protection Brigade Supports 2nd Infantry Division During Ulchi Freedom Shield 23 Exercise
The Army Reserve Cyber Protection Brigade (ARCPB) successfully supported the 2nd Infantry Division (2ID) C6 directorate in a critical operational support exercise from August 12 to September 2, 2023, as part of the annual Ulchi Freedom Shield 23 (UFS23) exercise.
Sept. 18, 2023 - The Army Reserve Cyber Protection Brigade (ARCPB) successfully supported the 2nd Infantry Division (2ID) C6 directorate in a critical operational support exercise from August 12 to September 2, 2023, as part of the annual...

5th ANGLICO Marines Conduct the Korean Maritime Exchange Program 23.3 (KMEP)
A U.S. Marine with 3rd Battalion, 6th Marines and Republic of Korea Marines with 3rd Battalion, 1st Regiment, 2nd Marine Division participate in a combined patrol during Korean Marine Exercise Program 23.3 at Rodriguez Live-fire Complex, Republic of Korea, March 28, 2023. KMEP is a series of continuous-combined training exercises designed to enhance the ROK-U.S. Alliance, promote stability on the Korean Peninsula, and strengthen combined military capabilities and interoperability. 3rd Battalion, 6th Marines is forward deployed in the Indo-Pacific under 4th Marines, 3rd Marine Division as part of the Unit Deployment Program.
Sept. 18, 2023 - From July to August 2023, U.S. Marines with 5th Air Naval Gunfire Liaison Company (5th ANGLICO), III Marine Expeditionary Force Information Group, participated in the Korean Marine Exchange Program 23.3 (KMEP)...