USS Forrestal begins final voyage

Work crews with Foss Marine Towing untie the decommissioned aircraft carrier Forrestal as it prepares to make its final voyage from the Navy's Inactive Ship Maintenance facility n South Philadelphia to a dismantling and recycling operation in Brownsville, Texas. ( ALEJANDRO A. ALVAREZ / STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER )
Work crews with Foss Marine Towing untie the decommissioned aircraft carrier Forrestal as it prepares to make its final voyage from the Navy's Inactive Ship Maintenance facility n South Philadelphia to a dismantling and recycling operation in Brownsville, Texas. ( ALEJANDRO A. ALVAREZ / STAFF PHOTOGRAPHER ) (DN)
Posted: February 06, 2014

The USS Forrestal set off under tow Tuesday morning for its final voyage from Philadelphia to a scrapping facility in Texas.

Pulled by the Foss Marine Towing boat Lauren Foss, the Forrestal was untied from its berth at the former Naval Ship Yard in the pre-dawn darkness and headed down the Delaware River for the start of what is expected to be a 17- to 18-day trip.

The Navy has paid one cent under a contract to have the 60-year-old vessel dismantled by All Star Metals in the Gulf port of Brownsville.

The Forrestal, the first of the post-World War II supercarriers, was decommissioned Sept. 11, 1993, after more than 38 years of service. The Navy had offered the carrier for use as a museum or memorial but said none of the applications it received was deemed viable.

Under its contract with the Navy, All Start Metals assumes all costs of towing, insuring, and dismantling the vessel with the aim of recovering its costs and making a profit through the sale of the scrap. The warship remains the Navy's property until dismantling is complete.

jgambardello@phillynews.com

856-779-3844

@jgambardello

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