D-Day ship, now a ferry, repowered with Twin Disc components


(RACINE, Wis.) — As part of the June 6, 1944 Normandy landings, the USS LST 510 (landing ship for tanks) delivered 200 soldiers and 70 tanks and jeeps to Omaha Beach. It then anchored offshore to serve as an impromptu hospital ship for the over 150,000 Allied wounded. For three months following the invasion, it ferried injured soldiers back to England and supplies back to the front, evading German U-boats and dive bombers. LST 510 was awarded a Battle Star for its meritorious participation.

Thought to be the last D-Day ship still in active service, the renamed M/V Cape Henlopen now plays a more peaceful maritime role: it transports passengers and autos across picturesque Block Island Sound. Recently, owner Cross Sound Ferry repowered the 328-by-50-foot historic vessel with a pair of 2,130 hp Caterpillar engines and state-of-the-art Twin Disc transmissions and control systems.

Thames Shipyard & Repair of New London, Conn., installed the Cat 3516C IMO Tier II engines. It paired these to Twin Disc's MGX-5600 QuickShift transmissions and four helm station EC300 Power Commander electronic controls supplied by Mentor, Ohio-based Great Lakes Power Products. Click here to view a video of the vessel in operation.

Cross Sound Ferry Services operates a fleet of nine ferries between its headquarters in New London, Conn., and Orient, N.Y., across Block Island Sound. The company's two-hour lighthouse cruise was named Editor's Choice Best in New England by Yankee Magazine. Its website is www.longislandferry.com.

For information about Twin Disc, visit www.twindisc.com.

By Professional Mariner Staff