SUBIC BAY FREEPORT – Businessmen and residents here and nearby communities are bracing up for the arrival of some 5,000 US Navy personnel and marines aboard three (3) US Navy ships that are expected to arrive tomorrow, Saturday.
USS Frank Cable (AS 40), a ship that provides repairs and support to US submarines will enter Subic Bay in the morning with the USS Peleliu (LHA 5) and USS Germantown (LSD 42) docking thereafter.
The Ships’ visit, in conjunction with PHIBLEX 2015, the annual exercise between Filipino and US Marines scheduled between Sept. 29 to Oct. 10 in Luzon and Palawan, are routine port calls that highlights the strong partnerships between the Philippines and the United States, according to the US Embassy in Manila in a statement.
USS Frank Cable, which also docked here in 2012, has a crew of approximately 500 sailors, 40 of whom are Filipino-American, who are eager to enjoy Olongapo City and strengthen their understanding of a country with deep historical ties to the United States and the U.S. Navy.
The Tarawa-class amphibious asssault ship USS Peleliu, which performed evacuation operations in Subic Bay when Mt. Pinatubo erupted in 1991, has some 3,000 officers and crew.
USS Germantown, a dock landing ship transporting and launching amphibious craft and vehicles for marine personnel, has a compliment of almost 500 officers & enlisted men.
While Subic has been converted into a Freeport after the US Military pull-out in 1992, US Navy ships’ arrivals by virtue of the Visiting Forces Agreement (VFA) between the Philippines and the United States have always been welcome as before for the economic activities generated.
Olongapo Mayor Rolen C. Paulino has vowed to provide a safe environment for US Navy personnel going out of the Freeport to the city for rest, recreation and shopping.
Submarine tender USS Frank Cable at Alava Dock in a previous visit to Subic Bay.