PEARL HARBOR (HawaiiNewsNow) - The USS Arizona Memorial reopened Friday after repairs were completed after midnight, the National Park Service said.
Public tours began at the memorial's normally scheduled time of 7:30 a.m., but NPS said the Navy will continue to do a visual safety inspection each morning before the first tour.
Last week Wednesday, a propeller wash from the hospital ship U.S.N.S. Mercy damaged the memorial dock, causing tours to the most-visited attraction in the state to be suspended. Most of the repair work to the dock was completed by Wednesday when a floating crane was used to re-position the bridge connecting the floating dock to the memorial, but Navy divers were able to wrap up their underwater work early Friday morning. A blessing was held several hours later.
Safety inspections started during the final stages of repair work and included reviews of how the structure did during a cycle of high and low tidal movements.
NPS Superintendent Paul DePrey said, “The National Park Service deeply appreciates the dedicated efforts of the US Navy and others to get this repair done as quickly and safely as possible.”
"This was a tremendous team effort - both with our military-civilian team and together with our partners at the National Park Service," said Capt. Stan Keeve, Commander, Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam. "We certainly appreciate the understanding and forbearance of veterans, visitors and kama'aina," Keeve added.
Barring any unforeseen complications, tours are scheduled every 15 minutes from 7:30 a.m. to 3 p.m.