Friday, January 02, 2009

P-8A Multi-Mission Maritime Aircraft Homebasing Announced

The Department of the Navy announced today its decision to provide facilities and functions to base five fleet squadrons of the P-8A Multi-Mission Maritime Aircraft (MMA) with a fleet replacement squadron (FRS) at Naval Air Station (NAS) Jacksonville, Fla., four fleet squadrons at NAS Whidbey Island, Wash., and three fleet squadrons at Marine Corps Base Hawaii Kaneohe Bay, Hawaii, with periodic squadron detachment operations at NAS North Island. This decision implements the preferred homebasing alternative 5 identified in the final environmental impact statement (FEIS) for the Introduction of the P-8A Multi-Mission Aircraft into the U.S. Navy Fleet (published November 2008). Introduction of the P-8A MMA squadrons is projected to begin no later than 2012 and be completed by 2019.

The notice of availability of the Navy’s record of decision (ROD) was published in the Federal Register on Dec. 31, 2008 and the ROD is available for public viewing on the project Web site at along with copies of the FEIS and supporting documents.

This action is needed to transition from existing P-3C aircraft to the P-8A MMA while maintaining the Navy’s overall maritime patrol capability supporting national defense objectives and policies without interruption or impediment to operations or combat readiness. Ultimately, this action will include a total of 84 fleet and FRS aircraft.