The US Navy sold 2 obsolete aircraft carriers to scrap dealers for a cent each

·2 min read
USS Kitty Hawk
The USS Kitty Hawk aircraft carrier in Hong Kong in 2008. Reuters
  • The US Navy sold two old aircraft carriers for a cent each to a ship-breaking firm.

  • The USS Kitty Hawk and USS John F. Kennedy had been decommissioned for years.

  • They are due to be broken up by a firm in Texas, which can make money from the scrap metal.

  • See more stories on Insider's business page.

The US Navy sold two aircraft carriers to a ship-breaking company for 1 cent each after decades of service.

The cut-price fee reflects the fact the company will profit from selling the ship metal for scrap, officials said.

Naval Sea Systems Command, a US Navy suborganization, said it had agreed to sell the USS Kitty Hawk and the USS John F. Kennedy to International Shipbreaking Limited, which is based in Brownsville, Texas, USA Today reported.

Towing and ship-breaking is a costly process, and the Navy has previously paid ISL large sums of money to recycle its ships, the Brownsville Herald reported.

"The contract values reflect that the contracted company will benefit from the subsequent sale of scrap steel, iron, and non-ferrous metal ores," said Alan Baribeau, a spokesman for the Naval Sea Systems Command in a statement cited by USA Today.

Both ships were launched in the 1960s and were capable of carrying dozens of aircraft. The Kitty Hawk was deployed in the Vietnam War, and the John F. Kennedy featured in the Gulf War.

The Kitty Hawk was decommissioned in 2o09 and the John F. Kennedy in 2017. Both have spent their time since being maintained in naval yards.

The ships are due to be towed to Brownsville for scrapping in the coming months, an ISL spokesperson told the Brownsville Herald.

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