The U.S. Coast Guard recently announced it will homeport two of the service’s new Sentinel-class 154'x25'5"x9'6" fast response cutters (FRC) in Astoria, Ore., starting in 2021. These two ships have not yet been named, but the FRCs are named after enlisted Coast Guard personnel who distinguished themselves in the line of duty.
Each of the two Astoria-based FRCs will provide the coastal maritime community with a 30% increase in annual operating hours on regional waters over the Coast Guard’s legacy 110' Island class patrol boats like the Coast Guard cutter Orcas, homeported in Coos Bay, Ore.
The FRC is equipped with improved command and control capability as well as increased sea-keeping abilities, an operational range of 2,950 nautical miles, a larger crew (24) and a higher transit speed of 28 knots than the aging110' patrol boats. A larger, 26', more capable stern launch cutter boat allows the FRC to conduct search-and-rescue and interdiction operations up to 50 miles away from the cutter, which greatly extends the vessel’s reach over the Coast Guard’s legacy patrol boat fleet. Each FRC must be able to conduct underway operations of at least 2,500 hours annually.
The Orcas will continue to operate from its homeport in Coos Bay until its service is replaced by the first of the Astoria-based FRCs in 2021.
Each FRC is made of steel with an aluminum superstructure and is ABS-classed High-Speed Naval Craft. For the new cutters, Bollinger is using a proven, in-service parent craft design based on the Damen Stan Patrol Boat 4708.
Main propulsion comes from twin MTU 20V4000 M93L diesel engines, producing 2,900 hp each. The patrol boat has state-of-the-art command, control, communications and computer technology that are interoperable with other USCG assets.
Each FRC carries a crew of 24 (three officers, 21 enlisted) and is equipped with a stabilized, remotely operated 25mm chain gun and four .50-caliber machine guns.