Bollinger Delivers USCGC Robert Ward
The U.S. Coast Guard on Tuesday took delivery of the 30th Fast Response Cutter (FRC), USCGC Robert Ward, in Key West, Fla.
The 154-foot patrol craft, built by Louisiana shipbuilder Bollinger Shipyards based on the Damen Stan Patrol Boat 4708 design, is the 30th vessel in the Coast Guard's Sentinel-class FRC program. USCGC Robert Ward is scheduled to be commissioned in California in February 2019. It will be the second of four FRC’s to be stationed in San Pedro, Calif.
“Previous cutters have been stationed around the nation including Alaska and Hawaii,” noted Ben Bordelon, Bollinger President & CEO. “FRCs already in commission have protected our country by seizing multiple tons of narcotics, interdicted thousands of illegal aliens and saved hundreds of lives.”
Described as an operational “game changer,” by senior Coast Guard officials, the FRC has a flank speed over 28 knots, state-of-the-art command, control, communications and computer technology, and a stern launch system for the vessel’s 26-foot cutter boat.
Recently, the Coast Guard deployed the FRC 1124, Oliver Berry from Hawaii across the Pacific to the Republic of the Marshall Islands. The 4,400 nautical mile trip marked the furthest deployment of an FRC to date, showcasing the FRC’s hugely expanded operational reach and capability.
“The FRC program is a model program for government acquisition and has surpassed all historical quality benchmarks for vessels of this type and complexity. The results are the delivery of truly extraordinary Coast Guard cutters that will serve our Nation for decades to come,” Bordelon said.
Each FRC is named for an enlisted Coast Guard hero who distinguished him or herself in the line of duty. The 30th FRC is named after Coast Guard hero Robert Ward, who served as coxswain of a landing craft on the Cotentin Peninsula during the invasion of Normandy. Ward was awarded the Silver Star for his conspicuous gallantry in action during landing operations despite continued shelling and mortar fire.