PACIFIC OCEAN – The Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Kidd (DDG 100), partnered with El Salvador Maritime Patrol Vessel (PM-13) to conduct a passing exercise (PASSEX), July 29.
PASSEXs are unit exercises requiring cooperation, communication and interoperability between two or more navies, testing advanced ship maneuvering and tactics. It affords the opportunity to improve crews' knowledge and demonstrate shared tactics.
"This exercise was a unique opportunity for Kidd to conduct training with the El Salvadoran Navy," said Cmdr. Nathan S. Wemett, commanding officer of Kidd. "Working together furthers our mutual ability to cooperate and provides a unique opportunity to reinforce valuable warfighting skills from our partners."
For the Sailors aboard participating ships, it was also their chance to improve their skills with their El Salvadoran counterparts sailing alongside. The two ships conducted division tactics (DIVTACS), a series of tactical shipboard movements, as well as practicing their communication skills.
"Communication was imperative throughout the entire exercise when conducting operations at such close proximity. All communications with the El Salvadoran Navy were incredibly professional and it was a great learning experience for all,” said L.t. j. g. Walker Hobson, USS Kidd’s officer of the deck during the PASSEX.
The Kidd conducted a brief stop to refuel in port Acajulta, marking the first time in nearly three years that a U.S. Navy warship has visited El Salvador.
USS Kidd is deployed to the U.S. Southern Command area of responsibility to support Joint Interagency Task Force South’s mission, which includes counter illicit drug trafficking in the Caribbean and Eastern Pacific.
U.S. Naval Forces Southern Command/U.S. 4th Fleet supports U.S. Southern Command’s joint and combined military operations by employing maritime forces in cooperative maritime security operations to maintain access, enhance interoperability, and build enduring partnerships in order to enhance regional security and promote peace, stability and prosperity in the Caribbean, Central and South American region.
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