On 25 August in Poole, England the Association for Rescue
at Sea (AFRAS) will present a new, D-class inshore lifeboat to the Royal National Lifeboat Institution
of Great Britain. The lifeboat was purchased from funds contributed to AFRAS by American donors supporting the RNLI.
The boat will be named “Semper Paratus”. A recognition in part of the close association between the U.S. Coast Guard
and the RNLI. The naming ceremony will be held at 1200; the lifeboat will be launched into the water; and there will be a demonstration of her characteristics.
The new D-class is an improved version of the Inshore D-Class lifeboat first introduced in 1963; it is ideal for rescues close to shore where larger lifeboats cannot operate, and has been the workhorse of the RNLI, making over half of its rescues. The vessel is 4.95 meters (16 feet, 3 inches) in length and 2 meters (6 feet, 7 inches) in beam and operates at 20 plus knots. The improved version is a rigid hull inflatable with a more powerful outboard motor and several watertight compartments for stowing gear. It can be righted manually by its 3-man crew after a capsize.