SAN DIEGO (AP) -- The Navy says it will decommission a warship docked off San Diego after suspected arson caused extensive damage, making it too expensive to restore.
Officials said Monday that fully repairing the USS Bonhomme Richard to warfighting capabilities would cost $2.5 billion to $3 billion and take five to seven years.
The amphibious assault ship burned for more than four days in July and was the Navy's worst U.S. warship fire outside of combat in recent memory.
In a statement, Navy Secretary Kenneth J. Braithwaite said, “We did not come to this decision lightly. Following an extensive material assessment in which various courses of action were considered and evaluated, we came to the conclusion that it is not fiscally responsible to restore her. Although it saddens me that it is not cost effective to bring her back, I know this ship’s legacy will continue to live on through the brave men and women who fought so hard to save her, as well as the Sailors and Marines who served aboard her during her 22-year history."
A senior defense official said in August that arson is suspected as the cause of fire and that a sailor was being questioned as a potential suspect.
-- Sources: Sailor under investigation for arson in USS Bonhomme Richard ship fire
-- Arson expert: Investigation of USS Bonhomme Richard fire may take more than a year
-- Regulators say smoke from ship fire not a health risk
-- Navy Admiral meets, thanks sailors who put out ship fire
-- Navy ship fire causing air quality problems in San Diego
-- Two sailors who battled ship fire test positive for coronavirus
-- Navy officials say all known fires aboard USS Bonhomme Richard are out
-- PHOTOS: Fire erupts aboard Navy ship