USS George H. W. Bush Successfully Completes TSTA/FEP

Story Number: NNS130823-13Release Date: 8/23/2013 12:49:00 PM
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By Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Robert Burck, USS George H.W. Bush Public Affairs

NORFOLK (NNS) -- USS George H. W. Bush (CVN 77) pulled in to its homeport of Norfolk after completing its Tailored Ship's Training Availability/Final Evaluation Problem (TSTA/FEP), Aug. 23.

In addition to TSTA/FEP, George H. W. Bush conducted Group Sail which tested the ability of the ship to operate with Carrier Strike Group (CSG) 2.

TSTA/FEP is designed to train the crew in preparation for deployment, as well as integrate ship's company with Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 8. This was the ship's first time out to sea with CVW 8 since its maiden deployment in 2011.

This process was graded by the Afloat Training Group (ATG) Atlantic.

"We train and evaluate the crew during real-world situations to see how the ship performs," said Chief Hospital Corpsman Timothy Bickerton, a member of ATG. "We look for competency, proficiency and situational awareness."

These training drills and real-world scenarios include an emphasis on damage control, flight deck operations and simulated combat. Throughout TSTA/FEP, Sailors carried out a number of exercises including firefighting, flooding casualties, man-overboard drills, simulated attacks by enemy ships, and conducting flight operations in various conditions.

As the completion of training and integration with the air wing came to a close, a final evaluation phase solidified the ship's readiness. The ship had more than 300 graded events, receiving an average of a 97 percent.

"ATG held a brief before they left and had a lot of really great things to say about our Sailors and our crew," said Lt. Cmdr. Tricia Cronau, the ship's training officer.

"I'm incredibly proud of the team and I think the crew has done exceptionally well," said commanding officer, Capt. Andrew Loiselle. "It's been great to watch the team give 100 percent focus and dedication."

The next step in certifying George H. W. Bush for deployment will be a Composite Unit Training Exercise (COMPTUEX) which will test all warfare mission areas of the ship and CSG 2.

"This was the very first time that a carrier strike group team has ever done the entire Group Sail concept and completed the training and readiness matrix that we went through during this underway," said Loiselle. "There was a lot to get done in a very short period of time, but I think that will set us up extremely well for COMPTUEX."

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