Marine General Visits ELCAS Pier

By MC3 Kenneth Gardner

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Lt. Gen. John Wissler (left), commander, U.S. Marine Corps Forces Command and Commanding General, Fleet Marine Forces, Atlantic, and Capt. Michael Ott (right), commodore, Naval Beach Group 2, discuss mission capabilities of the Elevated Causeway System (ELCAS) during Joint Logistics Over-the-Shore (JLOTS) operations during a visit to PHIBCB 2, Joint Expeditionary Base Little Creek, Fort Story, Va., May 17. (U.S. Navy photo/160517-N-VO150-348)

Lt. Gen. John Wissler, commander, U.S. Marine Corps Forces Command and Commanding General, Fleet Marine Forces, Atlantic, visited Amphibious Construction Battalion (PHIBCB) 2, Joint Expeditionary Base Little Creek, Fort Story, Virginia, May 17, to tour the Elevated Causeway System (ELCAS).

ELCAS is an expeditionary pier system that can be transported and erected worldwide, to move supplies and equipment in support of humanitarian efforts and military operations. During joint through-put operations, ELCAS’s key attribute is eliminating variables in the surf zone that restrict beach operations.

This unique system is part of the Assault Follow-On Echelon (AFOE) that arrives after the initial force has secured a beach. ELCAS is capable of extending 3,000 feet in length. Since it does not depend on tidal variations and surf zone, it can conduct 24-hour operations, constantly pushing equipment and supplies to sustain the troops. ELCAS can offload more than 300 containers and/or pieces of equipment in a 24-hour period. It utilizes the same components in the massive offload and backload in 2003 at Camp Patriot, Kuwait, in what was called the largest amphibious operation in U.S. history.

Wissler was accompanied by Capt. Michael Ott, commodore, Naval Beach Group (NBG) 2, and Capt. Chris LaPlatney, commanding officer, PHIBCB 2.  During his tour, they discussed the overall mission capabilities of ELCAS when utilized in joint logistics with the Army, including the Army Logistics Support Vessel (LSV), the largest vessel that can pull the ELCAS.

Lt. Luke Castin, ELCAS officer in charge, provided Wissler an overall tour of ELCAS including through-put operations using the 200T cranes and turn-tables to off-load INLS craft. In addition, Builder 1st Class David Fahy, marshalling yard supervisor, and Steelworker 2nd Class (DV) Brent Cook, pile yard supervisor, gave tours of the respective areas.

“It was great having Lt. Gen. Wissler on board during our ELCAS through-put operations,” Castin said. “After viewing firsthand what we here at PHIBCB 2 ‘Can Do,’ [the General might look to us for future requirements that he might not have had in the past.”

Wissler added, “I was truly impressed with the Seabees’ construction expertise and their professionalism. The ELCAS pier provides our planners with an additional option to assist connectors in providing logistical support for Marines in areas where the beach may not be suitable for landing.”

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BU1 (SCW) David Fahy (right), PHIBCB 2, discusses how external spudwells are assembled and their function in the ELCAS with Lt. Gen. John Wissler, commander, U.S. Marine Corps Forces Command and Commanding General, Fleet Marine Forces, Atlantic, during Joint Logistics Over-the-Shore (JLOTS) operations, Joint Expeditionary Base Little Creek, Fort Story, Va., May 17. (U.S. Navy photo/160517-N-VO150-360)

For more news from Expeditionary Strike Group 2, visit www.navy.mil/local/esg2/.

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Lt. Gen. John Wissler (second from left), commander, U.S. Marine Corps Forces Command and Commanding General, Fleet Marine Forces, Atlantic, walks the ELCAS roadway with Capt. Michael Ott (far left), commodore, Naval Beach Group 2; Capt. Chris LaPlatney (second from right), commanding officer, PHIBCB 2; and Lt. Luke Castin ELCAS officer in charge, PHIBCB 2 during Joint Logistics Over-the-Shore (JLOTS) operations, Joint Expeditionary Base Little Creek, Fort Story, Va., May 17. (U.S. Navy photo/160517-N-VO150-344)

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Capt. Chris LaPlatney (left), commanding officer, PHIBCB 2, provides an overview of the ELCAS condition and mission status to Lt. Gen. John Wissler, commander, U.S. Marine Corps Forces Command and Commanding General, Fleet Marine Forces, Atlantic, during Joint Logistics Over-the-Shore (JLOTS) operations, Joint Expeditionary Base Little Creek, Fort Story, Va., May 17. (U.S. Navy photo/160517-N-VO150-362)

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