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U.S. Coast Guard to commission three Sentinel-class cutter


According to information published by the U.S. Department of Defense on July 29, 2021, the Coast Guard’s three newest Fast Response Cutters (Sentinel-class cutter) were commissioned during a ceremony presided over by Adm. Karl Schultz, the Coast Guard’s commandant.
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Russian Vyborg Shipyard laid the Purga ice class coastguard ship of project 23550 925 001 Sentinel-class cutter Olivier Henry WPC 1140 (Picture source: U.S. Coast Guard)


The Coast Guard Cutters Myrtle Hazard (WPC 1139), Oliver Henry (WPC 1140) and Frederick Hatch (WPC 1143) were commissioned during a rare triple-commissioning ceremony at their new homeport at Coast Guard Forces Micronesia Sector Guam.

Like the 30-year old Island-class patrol boats before them, they will support the people of Guam, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands, and our international partners throughout Oceania. The FRCs represent the Coast Guard’s commitment to modernizing service assets to address the increasingly complex global Maritime Transportation System.

The Coast Guard already has a well-established presence within the region due to its bilateral shiprider agreements with Pacific Island Forum countries. These shiprider agreements allow partnering nations’ defense and law enforcement officers to go aboard Coast Guard vessels to observe, board and search vessels suspected of violating laws or regulations within their exclusive economic zones.

By embarking shipriders, Coast Guard crews are able to support allies in the region and work towards expanding security by addressing regional challenges to peace, prosperity, and social inclusion. The retention of crewmembers from these invaluable missions means the lessons learned from joint operations will carry over to the new FRCs, ensuring goodwill developed by past Coast Guard assets will remain applicable.

Named after Coast Guard enlisted heroes, FRCs are equipped with advanced command, control, communications, computers, intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance systems and boast a greater range and endurance. At 154-feet long, they reach speeds of over 28-knots covering a distance of 2,500 nautical miles over a five-day patrol. They are armed with a stabilized 25-mm machine gun mount and four crew-served .50-caliber machine guns.

These advanced capabilities greatly improve the Coast Guard’s ability to conduct missions ranging from search and rescue to national defense while also contributing to joint operations between the United States and its regional partners as they work towards common goals such as the prevention of illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing.

Each FRC has a standard 24-person crew. This brings over 70 new Coast Guard members to Guam, along with their family members. Prior to the FRCs’ arrival, the Coast Guard presence on Guam was composed of approximately 250 active duty personnel and 40 reservists.

USCGC Myrtle Hazard (WPC-1139) is the United States Coast Guard's 39th Sentinel-class cutter. Like her sister ships she was built in the Bollinger Shipyards, in Lockport, Louisiana.

She is equipped with a stern launching ramp, that allows her to launch or retrieve a water-jet propelled high-speed auxiliary boat, without first coming to a stop.

The crew's drinking water needs are met through a desalination unit.