The sister ship to the recently delivered six New South Wales Water Police boats officially entered service on December 4 with the Bermuda Water Police. This follows a delivery trip from the West Australian shipyard that included shipping the 16 metre vessel to Savannah, Georgia before traveling under her own power on a 900 nautical mile final voyage to the island of Bermuda via Morehead City in North Carolina.
Marking the occasion the Bermuda Police Service held a press conference outside its Marine Unit offices at Barr's Bay Park in the City of Hamilton to officially launch “Guardian”. Dignitaries present included H. E. The Governor, Sir John Vereker, Deputy Commissioner of Police Mrs. Roseanda Young, Chief Fire Officer Mr. Vincent Hollinsid as well as officials from H. M. Customs and Marine & Ports.
In his capacity as leader of the Police Service, Governor Sir John Vereker toured the vessel and commented: “Maintaining law and order on the sea is just as important as law and order on the land. This vessel is taking maintenance of law and order to a new level.”
Guardian is an all aluminum mono-hull design that features all the design upgrades included in the current New South Wales Police Boat fleet that replace the previous seven 16 meter police boats delivery by Austal in 2000. “Guardian” has a cruising speed of 20 knots with a 400 nautical mile range. The vessel is designed to operate up to 200 nautical miles offshore and comes with an array of communication and navigation equipment to compliment the role and capabilities.
After arriving at the island in late September, sea trials and familiarization exercises were held in local waters for the Police Marine Unit. The vessel will be based in Hamilton for general patrol, search & rescue, dive operations and general assistance to Police units and governmental agencies.