Military Sealift Command Public Affairs
For more information, contact:
Laura M. Seal 202-685-5055
September 15, 2009
MSC personnel accept Secretary of the Navy
Safety Excellence Award for USNS Bridge
|Click on the image for a high-resolution photo.|
|Rear Adm. Arthur J. Johnson, commander, Naval Safety Center (center right), congratulates the key personnel responsible for managing and operating the ship that received the 2008 Secretary of the Navy Safety Excellence Award for Military Sealift Command Safety at a ceremony at the Navy Memorial in Washington D.C., Sept. 15. Fast combat support ship USNS Bridge's Chief Mate Tom Guidice (left) and the ship's Norfolk-based class manager, Mike Ricci (center left) accepted the award. MSC Deputy Commander Rear Adm. Robert O. Wray, Jr., (right) also attended the ceremony.|
- U.S. Navy photo by Barry Lake, Military Sealift Command public affairs
The key Military Sealift Command personnel responsible for managing and operating fast combat support ship USNS Bridge accepted the ship's Secretary of the Navy Safety Excellence Award for Military Sealift Command Safety in a ceremony at the Navy Memorial in Washington, D.C., today.
Under Secretary of the Navy Robert Work and Vice Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Jonathan Greenert presented the award to Bridge's Chief Mate and Safety Officer Tom Guidice and the ship's Norfolk-based class manager, Mike Ricci.
Also in attendance from MSC were Deputy Commander Rear Adm. Robert O. Wray, Jr., Naval Fleet Auxiliary Force Program Manager Jim George, Safety Officer Kevin Kohlmann, and Engineering Policy Branch Head Fred Woody.
"We are honored to receive this award because it recognizes that our ships are working hard to ensure a safe working environment for the mariners," said Ricci, who also serves on MSC's International Safety Management Steering Committee, which writes safety procedures for MSC ships. "The job of a civil service mariner is inherently dangerous, so following safety procedures is paramount to the welfare of our at-sea workforce."
Bridge, which currently operates out of San Diego, received the award for accomplishing numerous safe underway replenishment operations and for promoting a culture in which every crew member acted as a safety observer. As part of the ship's safety program, Bridges' civil service master Capt. Jeffery Siepert briefed the crew on safety before each underway replenishment. In addition, under Guidice's leadership, the ship's crew held safety meetings and participated in a safety council, which led to improvements in forklift operations, lifeboat mustering and small boat operations.
In a Sept. 3 message to the Fleet announcing the 2008 award winners, Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus lauded the winning ships in all categories, stating that, "Your commitment to safety has no doubt prevented loss of life and precluded countless injuries and damage to our material assets. You have justly earned the right to my safety flag for the next year."
Rescue and salvage ship USNS Grapple and large, medium-speed, roll-on/roll-off ship USNS Mendonca were also recognized for safety achievements this year, receiving - along with Bridge - Chief of Naval Operations afloat safety awards and earning the right to display the Navy's green safety "S" on the ship's bulwark until the next competitive cycle.
"These ships have been leaders, not only in safely executing their missions, but also in reporting mishaps and corresponding lessons learned, which helps us all get smarter on how to more safely operate at sea," said Kohlmann.
MSC operates approximately 110 noncombatant, civilian-crewed ships that replenish U.S. Navy ships, conduct specialized missions, strategically preposition combat cargo at sea around the world and move military cargo and supplies used by deployed U.S. forces and coalition partners.
Return to 2009 Press Release archive...