U.S. Navy's $7.8 Billion Destroyer Is Five Years Late

File photo - Oct. 15, 2016: The USS Zumwalt before its commissioning. (U.S. Navy photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class George M. Bell/Released)

Bloomberg: Navy's $7.8 Billion Destroyer Now Due for Delivery 5 Years Late

* Delay adds to questions about Navy’s plans for 355-ship fleet
* Deck guns that cost $505 million are now in ‘inactive status’

The first ship in the U.S. Navy’s $23 billion program to build a new class of destroyers is scheduled for a September delivery -- more than five years later than originally scheduled and 10 years after construction began on the stealthy vessels built by General Dynamics Corp.

Delivery plans for the Zumwalt-class guided missile destroyer have been a roller-coaster of changing milestones, most recently moved from May of this year to September, according to budget documents confirmed by a Navy spokeswoman. The ship isn’t expected to have an initial combat capability until September 2021, at least three years later than planned.

The latest delay for the first $7.8 billion vessel, designated the DDG-1000, may add to doubts that the Navy can build, outfit and deliver vessels on time and within cost targets. The service is seeking public and congressional support for plans to reach a 355-ship fleet by 2034 from 289 today, a 20-year acceleration over last year’s plan to reach that goal.

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WNU Editor: What a disaster.

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