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Monday 14 December 2015

INFOGRAPHICS OF COAST GUARD VESSELS #2: United States, Venezuela and Albania

Written by D-Mitch

This is the second post of a new category of infographics of various coast guard vessels from around the world. These infographics aim to highlight the most important equipment of the vessels; I do not analyze the systems in depth as I do for the warships instead I provide some basic information mainly from wikipedia (if else I provide the source) about the ships, their history and their capabilities.
 1.  Legend class cutters (National Security Cutters - NSCs) of the United States Coast Guard
USCGC Bertholf 
USCGC Bertholf with open hangars
NSCs are the flagship of the Coast Guard's cutter fleet, designed to replace the 115-meter Hamilton-class High-Endurance Cutters, which entered service during the 1960s. Ingalls has delivered five till today with one more being on sea trials. The Legend-class cutters are the second longest of all U.S. Coast Guard cutters, behind the research icebreaker Healy, and will replace the twelve Hamilton class cutters in service. These cutters are envisioned by the Coast Guard as being able to undertake the entire range of the High Endurance Cutter roles with additional upgrades to make it more of an asset to the Department of Defense during declared national emergency contingencies (the NSC is built to about 90% military standards). These vessels can be used for intercepting suspect vessels, or for rescuing swimmers, fishery protection, maritime homeland security missions, counter terrorism, or coastal patrol missions. To facilitate intercept missions, the Legend class can carry and launch both the 7-meter Short Range Prosecutor and the 11-meter Long Range Interceptor RHIBs.

Bertholf and Vorovsky (Nerey class) in an exercise.

Long Range Interceptor (right) and Short
Range Prosecutor (left) aboard Bertholf
The cutter includes an aft launch and recovery area for two rigid hull inflatable boats (maximum three) and a flight deck to accommodate a range of manned and unmanned rotary wing aircraft in two hangars. It is the largest, most heavily armed and most technologically advanced class of cutter in the U.S. Coast Guard, with robust capabilities for maritime homeland security, law enforcement, marine safety, environmental protection and national defense missions. USCGC Bertholf is the lead ship of the National Security Cutter design and she was commissioned on August 4, 2000. Bertholf was the first to fire the Bofors 57 mm gun aboard a U.S. vessel on the 11th of February 2008.

Legend class cutter of the United States Coast Guard. High resolution image here.

2. Sentinel class (Fast Response Cutters - FRCs) of the United States Coast Guard
Sentinel class cutter of the U.S.C.G.
Sentinel class cutter of the U.S.C.G.
The 58 planned Sentinel class cutters, previously known as the Fast Response Cutters, are the new cutters that replace the 49 Island class cutters (an attempt to extend the lives of the aged Island Class cutters ended as an expensive failure in 2005). At 46.8 meters it is similar to, but larger than the 37-meter extended Island-class patrol boats. The Sentinel-class cutters are based primarily on the proven Damen Stan Patrol 4708 design by the Damen Shipyards Group in the Netherlands, although they are built at Bollinger Shipyard in Lockport, Louisiana. The first cutter, the USCGC Bernard C. Webber (she was commissioned on April 14, 2012), and all future Sentinel class will be named after enlisted Coast Guard heroes. The Sentinel class cutters have a bow thruster for maneuvering in crowded anchorages and channels. They also have small underwater fins, for coping with the rolling and pitching caused by large waves. They are equipped with a stern launching ramp to deploy the Short Range Prosecutor RHIB for rescues and interceptions. According to Marine Log, modifications to the Coast Guard vessels from the Stan 4708 design include an increase in speed from 23 to 28 knots (43 to 52 km/h; 26 to 32 mph), fixed-pitch rather than variable-pitch propellers, stern launch capability, and watertight bulkheads. The Fast Response Cutter is designed to conduct maritime drug interdiction, illegal immigrant interdiction, search and rescue, national defense, homeland security, and other Coast Guard missions, and is capable of deploying independently to carry out Coast Guard missions and prevent potential threats from approaching the nation’s shores. (source)

Sentinel class cutter of the United States Coast Guard. High resolution image here.

 3. Guaicamacuto class offshore patrol vessels of the Venezuelan Coast Guard / Venezuelan Navy
CG21 Guaicamacuto OPV
CG23 Naiguata OPV
The Guaicamacuto class patrol vessels (designation: Avante 1400) is a class of offshore patrol vessels built and designed by the Spanish Navantia in Cadiz. The design is also known as BVL (Spanish: Buque de Vigilancia de Litoral) in Venezuelan Navy service for patrol duty in economic exclusive zone. The contract for the BVL and POVZEE (Guaiquerí class) was signed together on the November 25, 2005. The last vessel GC-24 Tamanaco, would be constructed locally at the Venezuelan National Dams and Shipyards (DIANCA) in Puerto Cabello, Venezuela. Finally, the last ship changed her name to Comandante Eterno Hugo Chávez and she will enter service in 2016. Part of the ships' equipment is the high-tech Millennium CIWS, a 35mm gun that can engage air targets as well as surface targets with AHEAD ammunition; its maximum rate of fire is 1000 rounds per minute! The system except these Venezuelans patrol vessels, equips the Danish Absalon-class and Iver Huitfeldt-class frigates.

Guaicamacuto class offshore patrol vessel of the Venezuelan Coast Guard. High resolution image here.

4. Stan Patrol 4207 patrol vessels of the Albanian Coast Guard / Albanian Naval Force
P131 Iliria patrol vessel
P134 Butrinti with its NATWHAL RWS
The Iliria is the first of four patrols vessel of the Albanian Navy Brigade, built by the Damen Group. She was the first Damen Stan 4207 patrol vessel, a series of very successful patrol boats worldwide, to be built for Albania, and was commissioned in 2008. She was built in the Netherlands, while the three remaining vessels were built in Albania. The first vessel, Oriku, locally built in Albania out of a DTC (Damen Technical Cooperation) material package and under the local supervision of Damen staff, was delivered on February 17, 2012 to the Albanian Coast Guard. The vessels of the type carry till today no armament in Albanian service, however just recently Nexter  signed a contract with the Albanian Navy to supply 20mm gun NARWHAL RWS that will equip the all the boats.

Stan Patrol 4207 patrol vessel of the Albanian Coast Guard. High resolution image here.


  1. Nice post, but actually the USCG's Hamilton class are the most heavily armed class of cutters, not the Legend Class. But still a great post!

    1. With a 76mm gun, 2x25mm guns and a Phalanx, the Hamiltons are indeed the most heavily armed cutters of USCG (still) today. Thank you for your comment Carl!