The Coast Guard exercised a contract option Sept. 25, 2013, worth $250.7 million with Bollinger Shipyards of Lockport, La., for production of six Sentinel-class Fast Response Cutters (FRCs) and deep insurance spares. The six FRCs delivered under this option will be delivered in 2016.
This option brings the total number of FRCs under contract with Bollinger to 24 and the total value of the contract (to date) to $1.1 billion.
To date, the Coast Guard has taken delivery of seven FRCs. Six have been commissioned into service. The seventh, Charles David Jr, will be commissioned into service this November in Key West, Fla.
This contract action follows the Sentinel-class FRC acquisition project receiving DHS approval to enter full-rate production Sept. 18, 2013. Also known as the “Produce, Deploy and Support” acquisition phase, approval was granted after the cutter successfully completed Initial Operational Test and Evaluation (IOT&E). This approval allows the Coast Guard to continue with FRC acquisitions.
The FRC is already making a significant impact in the field. This summer, Coast Guard Cutter Robert Yered participated in Operation Unified Resolve, a multi-agency effort to support continuing law enforcement operations in Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. During this operation, Robert Yered supported a narcotics interdiction resulting in the seizure of $35 million worth of cocaine bound for the streets of the United States.
The FRC uses a proven, in-service parent craft design based on the Damen Stan Patrol Boat 4708. It has a flank speed of 28+ knots and a 2,500 hours per year operational employment target. It uses state-of-the-market command, control, communications and computer technology interoperable with the Coast Guard’s existing and future assets, as well as Department of Homeland Security and Department of Defense assets. The cutter also meets American Bureau of Shipping design, build and classification standards.
For more information: Fast Response Cutter project page