By Alex DeMetrick

ANNAPOLIS, Md. (WJZ) — The U.S. Naval Academy has a special visitor, with the academy playing host to the commissioning of the USS Sioux City.

The USS Sioux City is designed to sail and fight close to shore. “Up close and personal,” the vessel’s captain commander, Randy Malone, added.

That means having the controls and powerful engines needed for fast runs and quick stops. During a tour of the bridge, the ship’s captain ran the stats.

“We go about 40 knots and can stop in about 600 feet,” he said.

It can also support a helicopter and drones, while compartments inside are capable of launching rigid inflatable boats out the back door directly into the water.

The mission for those boats “is to carry boarding and raiding teams,” said Lt. Commander T.J. Orth. “We can use them to carry anti-submarine equipment and mine hunting equipment.”

The Sioux City is at the academy for a formal commissioning ceremony Saturday, Nov. 17. It also gives midshipmen a chance to look over one of the Navy’s fastest ships.

While WJZ was allowed to take a camera aboard, the one area off limits for recording was the ship’s high tech center for controlling weapons.

“We have a 57 millimeter main battery up front. We have a rolling airplane missile for self-defense, and then we have two 30 millimeter cannons aft,” Malone said.

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Alex DeMetrick


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