Navy's Submarine Launched Ballistic Missile Force Is Highly Ready

LCD-78-429: Published: Dec 21, 1978. Publicly Released: Jul 8, 1981.

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The Navy maintains the submarine-launched ballistic missile force in a high state of readiness because of its strategically important deterrent mission. The Navy achieves this favorable readiness posture through special emphasis on management, staffing, equipment, maintenance, and supply support. Costs to design, procure, operate, and maintain this system average over $4 billion annually.

GAO was unable to verify force readiness in the usual manner because examination of submarine and missile operations at sea was not practical, access to specifically requested Navy reports was denied, and significant delays were experienced in obtaining requested data. Interviews with top level Navy officials netted only general information on operations.

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