VP-45 Begins Deployment to Support Counter-illicit Trafficking Operations

Story Number: NNS180425-15Release Date: 4/25/2018 2:59:00 PM
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By Lieutenant Matthew Angel Patrol Squadron 45 Public Affairs

SAN SALVADOR, El Salvador (NNS) -- The Pelicans of Patrol Squadron (VP) 45 began a six-month split-site deployment to the U.S. 4th and 7th Fleet areas of operation. VP-45 relieved the Mad Foxes of VP-5, both stationed at Naval Air Station Jacksonville, Florida.

On April 9, VP-45 assumed the maritime patrol and reconnaissance effort in support of the Joint Interagency Task Force counter-illicit trafficking operations in the U.S. 4th Fleet area of operations. Their U.S. 4th Fleet site is led by Officer in Charge Lt. Cmdr. Christopher Brugler, and consists of 46 personnel and one P-8A "Poseidon" aircraft, operating from Cooperative Security Location Comalapa in El Salvador.

VP-45 flies the P-8 Poseidon, the Navy's newest MPRA aircraft. The P-8A is equipped with the most advanced technology available and the ability to conduct air-to-air refueling, making it the most capable anti-submarine and maritime patrol and reconnaissance platform in the world.

"It's truly a great privilege representing Patrol Squadron 45, Wing-11 and 4th Fleet in El Salvador," said Lt. Eric Aragone. "The drug trade has impacted a large number of Americans and it's an honor to play a small part in its prevention."

With VP-45's arrival to U.S. 4th Fleet, they will continue to carry out the U.S. Navy's mission to halt the smuggling of illicit drugs and arms while continuing to foster and build relationships with regional partner nations.

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For more news from U.S. Naval Forces Southern Command & U.S. 4th Fleet, visit www.navy.mil/local/cusns/.

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