Developing the Capability To Supply Troops Adequately if Fixed Ports Are Not Available

LCD-81-15: Published: Dec 1, 1980. Publicly Released: Dec 1, 1980.

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GAO reviewed Department of Defense (DOD) efforts to develop a capability to supply and sustain military forces by offloading sealift cargo over the shore if overseas port facilities were inadequate or denied.

Although a requirement for such a capability was recognized as early as 1970, progress toward its development has been exceedingly slow. If presently required, only a very limited capability, using mostly test equipment, could be deployed. Both the Army and the Navy are addressing the serious ship offload problems which would be encountered if ports were not available, but not all of the problems have been solved yet. GAO believes DOD could better address the problems if requirements for alternative offloading methods were quantified.

Recommendation for Executive Action

  1. Status:

    Comments: Please call 202/512-6100 for additional information.

    Recommendation: The Assistant Secretary of Defense for Manpower, Reserve Affairs, and Logistics should: (1) review time phased requirements for the major scenarios to determine needs; (2) prioritize requirements if overseas ports are denied, and quantify those requirements for containers, roll-on/roll-off cargo, and bulk fuels; and (3) use the above information to set specific goals for Army and Navy development efforts, including the desired degree of interoperability between their systems.

    Agency Affected: Department of Defense: Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense (Manpower, Reserve Affairs and Logistics)


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