YOKOSUKA, Japan (NNS) -- Austin-class amphibious transport dock ship USS Denver (LPD 9), forward-deployed to Sasebo, Japan, arrived at Fleet Activities Yokosuka June 6 for a three-week training availability for the crew.
Denver Sailors participated in a variety of training courses including instrument calibration, navigation, and engineering to name a few.
"I want all the students who come through this class to learn their job - and it is about more than just checking gauges," said Machinist's Mate 1st Class (SW) Jason Roban, an instructor at Afloat Training Group Western Pacific (ATGWP). "Some new Sailors missed lots of other things that could be problematic down the road."
Members of the Denver crew are also training at Yokosuka's Center for Naval Engineering, a state-of-the-art damage control training facility equipped with a firefighting simulator.
"For most of the young Sailors who come to the school, this is the first time they have fought a live fire," said Aviation Boatswain's Mate (Handling) 1st Class (AW/SW) John Cacal. "The simulator gives them a feel for being in a real fire and instills confidence in handling their equipment."
The training also offered Sailors an opportunity to respond to a real fire.
"As a space supervisor, I participate in all of the main space fire drills, but this is the first time I have combated a real fire," said Machinist's Mate 2nd Class (SW) Kevin Walsh. "Being able to feel the heat and see a fire gave me a different perspective from the training we normally do."
"It was helpful to charge hoses, because we normally don't get the chance to do that on the ship," Walsh added. "I feel like I will be better prepared in a real fire."
To help strengthen in-rate knowledge, engineers attended the Boiler Water Treatment class at ATGWP, a classroom-centric course with laboratory activities that deals with boiler feed water and potable water properties and chemical treatment.
"This class was very informative," said Ensign Megan McCulloch, Denver's engineering officer. "I only recently took over as engineering officer and don't know everything about the job. This class helped me learn what to look for in the logs and what procedure to carry out if something isn't working the right way."
After completion of the three-week training availability, Denver will return to Sasebo where the crew will make preparations for their fall patrol.
For more news from USS Denver, visit http://www.navy.mil/local/lpd9/.