Horizon Shipbuilding completed construction of its 74-ft. aluminum Pilot for the port of Umm Qasr
. The boat reportedly exceeded its required top speed by more than six knots during trials conducted off the
Alabama coast last
month. The designer, Blancke Marine Service of Woodbury, NJ, worked closely with the shipyard to produce a highly functional design that was economical to construct, but entirely responsive to U.S. Government design and operational requirements. The hull, which was designed to ABS rules and certified by ABS New Orleans, can be easily adapted as a fireboat, patrol vessel or small coastal crew boat.
The boat is powered by Caterpillar 3406E main engines and UltraJet water jets, Model 451, providing more than 1,400 total hp. The boat was required to reach a top speed of 18 knots, but operated at more than 24
knots during multiple sea trials. The new design features an exterior deck plated in five bar checkered plate, providing a non-skid surface that isn’t abrasive. The vessel also has an extra heavy side shear plate with six in. “D” fendering on the sides, doubled on the bow. A rescue ladder on the stern has been fabricated between the jet drives. The pilot boat will soon be placed on board a freighter bound for Kuwait City in the Arabian Gulf, where it will be offloaded then sailed under its own power to the port of Umm Qasr, Iraq.