USS Little Rock in January, with sailors working to shovel the snow off the deck following some snow and freezing rain. (Verity Stevenson/CBC)

USS Little Rock source of local noise complaints


USS Little Rock, the American Navy war ship that became stranded in Montreal at Christmas, may have worn out its welcome.

Local residents in the condo dwellings nearby, are fed up with the noise of the generators necessary to keep the ship operating, as it waits to leave Montreal’s Old Port.

The frigid temperatures in late December had the ship locked into ice and unable to continue its journey.

“Those two generators are detestable.”

The ship was commissioned on December 16, 2017, in Buffalo, New York.

It was making it’s way through Lake Ontario and up the St. Lawrence Seaway bound for its home port in Jacksonville, Florida, when the temperatures plummeted and stranded the ship.

Port of Montreal spokesperson, Mélanie Nadeau, told CBC News that the location of the ship, since January 19, was decided upon with “safety and security in mind” and because the current is not as strong.

Alain Stanke, who lives close to the port, said the noise of the ship continues around the clock and sounds like trucks rumbing.

“It’s like the motor of a large truck that’s driving at a high speed,” Stanke told CBC News.

“Those two generators are detestable.” he said.

The attempts at soundproofing have not worked, despite the efforts of those on board the ship and port officials

The lights illuminating the ship were dimmed, and in February soundproofing using an acoustic barrier wall surrounding the generators was installed, Nadeau responded in an email.

“We continue to work to put in place other mitigation measures to ensure a healthy coexistence with the port’s neighbours,” she wrote to CBC.

Nancy Dossous, left, chats with members of the LCS 109 Warhawgs as they package bread in the Welcome Hall Mission’s market warehouse. (Louis-Marie Philidor/CBC)

The days are numbered for the ship’s stay in Montreal. Temperatures are beginning to rise and it is hoped the ship will be homeward bound soon.

Several of the crew members did, however, make a good impression on some Montrealers.

The sailors have been using the time during this sojourn for mission training and certification, and visiting the city in their off hours.

“I’m hoping it’s inspiring for them”

Then just over a week ago, 24 crew members of the LCS 109 Warhawgs, volunteered at the Welcome Hall Mission

They sorted donations of fruits, vegetables and clothing and packed grocery bags for the less fortunate on Friday February 23rd.

Nancy Dossous, donor relations advisor at the Welcome Hall Mission, has an affinity for members of the navy.

She said when she heard about the crew’s plight, she thought she’d reach out and see if they wanted to lend a helping hand.

“I’m hoping it’s inspiring for them,” she told CBC during the event.

Dossous’ father served in the U.S. Navy, and she told CBC, sailors occupy a “special place” in her heart.

The mission feeds 3,000 people a week.

“At times to feed that many people, everything that goes into that distribution, you feel like you need a small army. So we have the navy,” she said, smiling.

USS Little Rock and its crew are expected to be able to leave around mid-March, weather pemitting.

(With files from CBC Montreal)

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