Naval Weather Service Association (NWSA)



An association of Aerographers & Mates,
Meteorologists & Oceanographers

USS Boxer Sailor Helps Repair Iraqi Weather Station


Story Number: NNS061211-05
Release Date: 12/11/2006 8:33:00 AM

By Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Brian Gaines, USS Boxer Public Affairs

USS BOXER, At sea (NNS) -- USS Boxer’s (LHD 4) Aerographer’s Mate 1st Class (AW/SW) Clayton Corbin reported to Iraq’s Al Basra Oil Terminal (ABOT) in the North Persian Gulf Dec. 7 to help repair its automated weather station.

Corbin was sent to ABOT to repair an anemometer, a weather device that measures wind speed and direction. The unmanned weather station records and transmits weather data such as rainfall, wind speed, air pressure and visibility to Combined Task Force (CTF) 158, which manages coalition forces in the region. “The weather station helps CTF 158 manage the movement of ships in the region,” said Corbin. “When the station functions properly it helps ships stay clear of foul weather.”

The automated weather station also provides data to the Navy’s Meteorological and Oceanographic Command (METOC), currently operating aboard Boxer. METOC analyzes the data and provides weather advisories for CTF 158 and coalition ships operating in the area.

“The weather station is an essential tool for us to verify forecasts for the oil platforms and the local area,” said Corbin. “We don’t have technicians stationed there. Lending a hand to keep it running is vital to our mission.”

Aerographer’s Mates are typically assigned to Naval Air Stations or aboard ships. Working on a remote weather station aboard an Iraqi oil platform isn’t a routine assignment.

“I’m excited,” he said. “The Navy is giving me an opportunity to do something outside the normal boundaries of my day-to-day duties.”

Corbin was chosen for the assignment because of his experience repairing automated weather stations.

“He has what it takes to get this weather station back on its feet,” said Boxer’s Chief Aerographer’s Mate (AW/SW) Steven Newsom.

Corbin is expected to stay several days aboard ABOT before returning to Boxer.

Boxer is the flagship for USS Boxer Expeditionary Strike Group (BOXESG), currently operating in the Persian Gulf in support of U.S. 5th Fleet’s Maritime Security Operations (MSO). MSO help set the conditions for security and stability in the region and protect Iraq’s sea-based infrastructure, which provides the Iraqi people the opportunity for self-determination.

Commander, U.S. 5th Fleet’s area of operation encompasses about 2.2 million square miles and includes the Arabian Gulf, Arabian Sea, Red Sea, Gulf of Oman, Gulf of Aden and parts of the Indian Ocean. This expanse includes three critical choke points at the Strait of Hormuz, The Suez Canal, and the Strait of Bab al Mandeb at the southern tip of Yemen.

For related news, visit the Commander, U.S. Naval Forces Central Command/Commander, U.S. 5th Fleet Navy NewsStand page at