The new 175-foot Keeper Class Coastal Buoy Tenders, represent the new wave in buoy tending. The first of 14 in the class, they are the first Coast Guard cutters equipped with Z-Drive propulsion units instead of the standard propeller and rudder configuration. They are designed to independently rotate 360 degrees. Combined with a thruster in the bow, they give the Keeper -class cutters unmatched maneuverability.
With state-of-the-art electronics and navigation systems including Dynamic Positioning System (DPS) which uses a Differential Global Positioning System, and electronic chart displays - these buoy tenders maneuver and position aids more accurately and efficiently with fewer crew. Other improvements have allowed the Coast Guard to decrease its crew from 24-34 on current vessels of similar type to 18 on the Keeper Class.
Click on the buoy tender to learn more about these dedicated Coast Guard women:
USCGC Ida Lewis (WLM-551)
Newport, Rhode Island
Phone: (401) 841-6948
USCGC Katherine Walker (WLM-552)
Bayonne, New Jersey
Phone: (201) 823-5311
USCGC Abbie Burgess (WLM-553)
Phone: (207) 594-2663
USCGC Barbara Mabrity (WLM-559)
Telephone: (334) 441-6275
USCGC Maria Bray (WLM-562)
Telephone: (904) 247-7336
Click here for a slide show of the Keeper Class cutter. This tour will take about 12 minutes to complete. Each photograph is timed for 20 seconds to allow for slow modem speeds. You can exit the slide show by clicking on "Exit" under each photograph.