The following is the text of a news release from Bollinger Shipyards:
(LOCKPORT, La.) (July 24) — The U.S. Coast Guard awarded a $255 million contract option to Bollinger Shipyards on July 23 for the production of six more Sentinel-class fast-response cutters (FRCs). This option award brings the total number of FRCs under contract with Bollinger to 30, with a current contract value of $1.4 billion. The FRCs acquired under this contract option are scheduled to be delivered to the Coast Guard in 2017 and will be homeported at various bases around the United States.
Chris Bollinger, president of Bollinger Shipyards, said, "We are extremely pleased that the Coast Guard has awarded six additional fast-response cutters to our current contract. This award reflects the continued confidence that the Coast Guard has in our vessels. This contract option will continue to provide jobs for hundreds of dedicated craftsmen employed at Bollinger as well as our subcontractors in the southern Louisiana area. We are very proud of the fact that we have built and delivered every patrol boat in the Coast Guard’s entire fleet. Through hard work and commitment to quality, our exceptional work force consistently exceeds customer expectation in the production of these patrol boats that are making a positive impact on the safety and security of our nation."
On June 25, Bollinger Shipyards delivered the USCGC Raymond Evans, the 10th FRC to the United States Coast Guard. The Coast Guard took delivery on June 25 in Key West, Fla., and is scheduled to commission the vessel in Key West during September. Delivered FRCs operating in the Southeastern United States, the Bahamas and the Caribbean have already had a major impact on Coast Guard operations. Recent interdictions by USCGC Paul Clark and Charles Sexton resulted in the seizure of thousands of pounds of marijuana and cocaine. In addition, FRCs in south Florida have interdicted hundreds of illegal migrants attempting to reach our shores and saved over 100 lives. Coast Guard flag officers have consistently termed the FRCs as operational "game changers" for the Coast Guard.
The Sentinel class is fast replacing the Coast Guard’s venerable Island-class 110-foot patrol boat. The FRC uses a proven, in-service parent craft design based on the Damen Stan Patrol 4708. It can operate at speeds over 28 knots and is armed with one stabilized, remotely operated 25mm chain gun and four crew-served .50-caliber machine guns. Other requirements include the ability to perform independently for a minimum of five days at sea and capable of underway operations for a minimum of 2,500 hours per year. It uses state-of-the-market command, control, communications and computer technology that are interoperable with the Coast Guard’s existing and future assets, as well as Department of Homeland Security and Department of Defense assets. The cutter meets American Bureau of Shipping design, build and class standards.
Bollinger Shipyards Inc. (www.bollingershipyards.com) is a leading designer and builder of fast military patrol boats, oceangoing double hull barges, offshore oil field support vessels, tugboats, rigs, liftboats, inland waterways push boats, barges, and other steel and aluminum products from its new construction shipyards. Bollinger has 10 shipyards and all are strategically located between New Orleans and Houston with direct access to the Gulf of Mexico, Mississippi River and the Intracoastal Waterway. Bollinger is the largest vessel repair company in the Gulf of Mexico region with 28 dry docks in Louisiana and Texas.