The Coast Guard Cutter Terrapin
will officially enter the Coast Guard fleet during a commissioning ceremony to be held Thursday in Bellingham, Wash., at Fairhaven Moorings
Washington Gov., Christine Gregoire, Rear Adm. Richard Houck, Thirteenth District Commander, and Lt. j.g. Gerrod Glauner, Commanding Officer of the Terrapin, are scheduled to speak at the ceremony.
The Terrapin is an 87-foot patrol boat and joins the other seven patrol boats in the Puget Sound region. The seven other patrol boats include the Sea Lion, homeported at Station Bellingham, Wash., the Osprey homeported in Port Townsend, Wash., the Cuttyhunk, Swordfish, Wahoo and Adelie stationed in Port Angeles, Wash., and the Blue Shark stationed in Everett, Wash. Once placed in service, the Terrapin will operate out of Station Bellingham.
The Terrapin is an innovative, multi-mission class of vessel capable of performing search & rescue, law enforcement, fishery patrols, drug interdiction, migrant interdiction, and homeland security duties up to 200 miles offshore. The Terrapin carries a 10-person crew and is capable of achieving a maximum continuous speed of 25 knots. The average patrol speed is 15 knots.
A unique feature of the Cutter's design is the Cutter Small Boat launch and recovery system. The system includes a fixed ramp that is incorporated into the stern of the boat which allows the small boat to drive onto the patrol boat while the larger vessel is underway. This feature significantly improves the safety of the recovery evolution.
Governor Gregoire will become the Terrapin's sponsor and will serve as a civilian advocate for the cutter and its crew.
In naval tradition the hoisting of the Coast Guard ensign or flag, the assumption of command and the manning of the ship at the commissioning ceremony will symbolize the Terrapin's entry into the Coast Guard's fleet.