The Mobile-built USNS Trenton (T-EPF 5) Expeditionary Fast Transport ship assisted in an ocean rescue of asylum seekers in distress in the Mediterranean Sea, saving the lives of 41 people and recovering 12 bodies, according to a U.S. Sixth Fleet statement.
The rescue underscores the value, flexibility, and speed of the EPF’s medical assistance and disaster-relief capability, Business Council of Alabama member Austal USA, which built the ship, said.
The Navy said the Trenton (formerly the JHSV-5) was conducting routine operations in the Mediterranean when 40 people were rescued and given food, water, and medical care onboard in accordance with obligations under international law.
“Forty people have been recovered and are being provided food, water and medical care on board Trenton,” the Navy statement said. “U.S. authorities are coordinating with our international partners to determine their ultimate disposition.”
The Trenton was delivered to the Navy in 2015 during a ceremony in Mobile.
“As the JHSV program matures with each successful delivery, Austal continues to meet our commitments to the Navy,” Austal USA President Craig Perciavalle said then. “Based on reports we’ve received, the first four JHSVs we delivered have been exercising their flexibility in the fleet showing just how many different missions they can perform globally.”