Why Is The U.S. Navy Always Buying Defective Ships?

The newest Littoral Combat Ship, the USS St. Louis, is launched in Wisconsin in December. The LCS class has been bogged down by defects. (Courtesy U.S. Navy)

Roll Call: Navy routinely buys defective ships

Former shipbuilding executive: “There’s an old adage: ‘A ship so nice, we built it twice’”

For the U.S. Navy, buying warships that are defective, unfinished or both has become the norm.

The habit is expensive, dangerous and leaves overworked sailors to deal with faulty ships in need of repair from day one — yet it has escaped sufficient scrutiny in Washington.

Contrary to the Navy’s own policy, and despite spending nearly $16 billion on average in each of the last 30 years on new warships, most U.S. combat vessels are delivered from private shipbuilders with flaws significant enough to impair the vessels’ ability to perform missions or to keep crews safe, according to recent audits conducted for Congress.

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WNU Editor: With no accountability (and no serious penalties), this problem is only going to continue. The same can be said about the Air Force (F-35), and the US Army (Comanche helicopter).

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