Response Boat - Medium (RB-M) - Contract Award (All Hands Email)
To the Men and Women of the Coast Guard:
I am very pleased to inform you that the Coast Guard has awarded a production contract to Marinette Marine Corporation for the design, construction, outfit and delivery of the Response
Boat-Medium system. Marinette Marine Corporation will team with Kvichak Marine Industries to build and deliver up to 180 RB-Ms over a production period of up to eight years, a contract valued at approximately $600 million, to replace our aging fleet of 41’ UTBs and more than 40 other nonstandard boat types that have been the workhorses at coastal stations for more than 25 years. The first RB-M is planned to enter the fleet in late 2007.
In my first SITREP to you upon assuming my duties as Commandant, I stated that you must have the tools and support you need to do your job, and I pledged to ensure that our Coast Guard men and women are equipped with the most capable fleet of multi-mission ships, aircraft, boats and command and control systems available. The RB-M is a critical step in upholding my pledge to you. Added to the current boat force which consists of the 47’ MLB, RB-S, and SPC, the RB-M will complete the multi-year recapitalization of our shore based response boat fleet.
The new boats will have increased maneuverability, the ability to mount light machine guns, and be capable of speeds in excess of 40 knots (46 mph) with twin high output inboard diesel engines that comply with stringent EPA and International Maritime Organization emissions standards. A full cabin will provide crew protection from the elements and be equipped with a robust navigation system, heating and air conditioning, shock mitigating seats and a communication system capable of communicating with other federal, state and local homeland security partners.
The RB-M will greatly improve our readiness and responsiveness throughout the country as we execute our many missions to enhance the safety, security and stewardship of our oceans and waterways. With this faster, more capable standardized boat, we will be putting the right tools in the hands of our people to do the job our Nation needs them to do. Concurrently, we will be standardizing the maintenance and support systems necessary to maximize our mission effectiveness.
The RB-M acquisition is another significant step forward as we continue to prepare our Coast Guard to meet all threats and all hazards by modernizing our fleet of ships, boats, and aircraft, along with the systems and infrastructure that support them. Along with several other important modernization programs including Deepwater, Rescue 21 and the RB-S acquisition, the delivery of RB-M will make us a more ready and responsive Coast Guard.
We remain: All Hazards…All Threats…Always Ready
Admiral Thad Allen