Delta Launch pilots order fifth boat from Gladding-Hearn


The following is the text of a news release from Gladding-Hearn Shipbuilding:

(SOMERSET, Mass.) — Delta Launch Services, the operating company for the Associated Branch pilots on the Southwest Pass of the Mississippi, has ordered a new pilot boat from Gladding-Hearn Shipbuilding, Duclos Corp. Delivery of the new 52-footer is scheduled for 2018. It is the fifth St. John’s-class launch built for the Delta pilots by the Somerset, Mass., shipyard.

The new launch, a sister ship to Mississippi delivered in 2013, measures 52 feet 6 inches overall, with a beam of 16 feet 11 inches and a draft of 4 feet 8 inches. The all-aluminum pilot boat features the C. Raymond Hunt-designed deep V hull. It will be powered by twin Caterpillar C-18 EPA Tier 3 diesel engines, each delivering 671 bhp at 2,100 rpm and a top speed of 24 knots. Quickshift gears will turn five-blade Bruton bronze propellers. The launch will be equipped with a 12-kW Northern Lights genset.

The wheelhouse, with a small trunk, will be flush-mounted to the deck amidships. Aft of its helm station are six Llebroc pilot seats. The forecastle will be equipped with enclosed marine head, settee and three berths. The wheelhouse and forecastle will be heated and cooled by three reverse-cycle air-conditioning units, totaling 40,000 BTUs.  

Outside of the wheelhouse are wide side decks, rear and side doors, and a boarding platform on the roof. At the transom is a winch-operated rotating davit over a recessed platform for rescue operations.

The new launch will be U.S. Coast Guard Subchapter T-certified to carry 12 passengers for hire.

By Professional Mariner Staff