Year Built
Official Number
Avondale Marine Ways
General Type
Specific Type
LASH Barge
Ship Length
820.00 feet
100.00 feet
Mast Height
142.00 feet
Net Tons
18710.00 tons
Gross Tons
26410.00 tons
Cargo Capacity
72332.00 square feet
Draft, Summer
35.08 tons
Draft, Lightweight
15.30 tons
Displacement, Summer
44606.00 tons
Displacement, Lightweight
18000.00 tons
Immersion, Summer
142.00 tons
Immersion, Lightweight
104.00 tons
Sold - Scrap

Historical Narrative

SS Cape Florida is a Lighter Aboard Ship (LASH) barge carrier.  The vessel, launched in 1971 at Avondale Shipyard in New Orleans, Louisiana , was originally named LASH Turkiye.  Prudential Grace Line operated LASH Turkiye in commercial service until the company sold the ship to Delta Lines, which renamed it SS Delta Caribe.

Lighters are flat-bottomed barges.  The LASH system refers to the practice of loading cargo onto barges, which are then floated to and from a mother ship. This allows loading and unloading of containerized cargo off-shore.  LASH barge carriers are equipped with a stern crane that lifts lighters aboard the vessel, where they can be stacked and stowed on deck.  LASH barges are smaller and lighter than their counterparts, SEABEE barges.

The Maritime Administration purchased Delta Caribe on May 8, 1986; the vessel was placed in the Ready Reserve Force (RRF) on February 17, 1987 and renamed SS Cape Florida.

The Navy activated Cape Florida during Operations DESERT SHIELD/DESERT STORM from October 18, 1990 until November 20, 1991.  After being delayed by mechanical difficulties, the vessel sailed with cargo in early December 1990, first to Port Said, Egypt and then to Dammam, Saudi Arabia.  In April 1991, Cape Florida departed Dammam for Newport, United Kingdom and also called in Bremerhaven, Germany.  The vessel returned to Dammam in July 1991 before returning to the U.S. that fall to discharge its barges in Galveston, Texas and New Orleans, Louisiana . 

The Navy activated Cape Florida for the last time for Operation IRAQI FREEDOM, in which it operated from October 14, 2004 until January 7, 2005. 

The Maritime Administration downgraded Cape Florida and removed it from the RRF on July 31, 2006.  The vessel is currently classified as retention for emergency sealift purposes.

Vessel Name History

1971 - 1978: LASH Turkiye
1978 - 1987: Delta Caribe
1987 - present: Cape Florida

Vessel Name History





No Mission for this vessel

Historical Documents
Name Download


Event Date Content
4/30/1986 ex DELTA CARIBE (86)
Ship Name Change
2/17/1987 Ship DELTA CARIBE changes name to CAPE FLORIDA
Interim Movement
2/18/1997 Completed deactivation
Interim Movement
7/29/1998 No-Notice Activation sea trial to Violet
Interim Movement
7/30/1998 In for deactivation
Interim Movement
10/12/1998 ENRTE: Port of Orange for deactivation
Interim Movement
10/15/1998 At Port of Orange TX for deactivation
Interim Movement
11/30/1998 Under tow to BRF
Interim Movement
11/30/1998 Completed repairs at Port of Orange TX
Interim Movement
9/27/2000 Conducting sea trial to Atlantic Marine
Interim Movement
10/2/2000 Completed sea trial at Atlantic Marine
Interim Movement
12/1/2000 Return tow to BRF from Atlantic Marine
Interim Movement
12/5/2000 Returned from drydocking Atlantic Marine
Interim Movement
11/30/2001 Under tow to Atlantic Marine Mobile AL
Interim Movement
12/3/2001 At Atlantic Marine for container upgrade
Interim Movement
4/26/2002 Under tow to BRF from Atlantic Marine
Interim Movement
4/29/2002 Returning from Atlantic Marine | repairs
Interim Movement
8/25/2002 Under tow to City Docks for activation
Interim Movement
8/25/2002 At Port of Orange fr No Notice Activatin
Interim Movement
8/30/2002 Turbo Activation 02-02 sea trial
Interim Movement
9/3/2002 Completed Turbo Activation 02-02 S/T
Interim Movement
2/20/2003 Maintenance activation sea trial
Interim Movement
2/24/2003 Completed maintenance sea trial
Interim Movement
7/21/2003 Move from Berth 1 to Berth 4 in Orange
Interim Movement
7/21/2003 Shift to Berth 4 complete | New Homeport
Vessel Activation
10/13/2004 Activation sea trial for OIF | MSC OPCON 10/14/04
Interim Movement
12/29/2004 Completed OIF mission and sea trial | MARAD OPCON
Interim Movement
10/11/2005 ENRTE: BRF
Interim Movement
10/11/2005 Loading Lash Barges
Interim Movement
Status Change
2/5/2009 NDRF Status changed from Military Useful to Emergency Sealift as of 2-5-09.
Logistics Support
3/30/2015 Lifecycle downgrade to non-retention

Ship Imagery

Status Cards


Date Type Name Download
(No Date) National Register Eligibility Assessment Cape Florida 03_22_2018.pdf Default Generic Download Image


No documents for this vessel

Shipwreck Information

No ship wreck information for this vessel