U.S. Coast Guard Orders Six Over-The-Horizon Cutter Boats

The U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) placed a delivery order worth approximately $2.31 million with SAFE Boats International LLC of Bremerton, Washington, for six over the horizon IV (OTH-IV) cutter boats on Feb. 13.

This brings the total number of OTH-IVs ordered to 96. The six OTH-IVs under the most recent order are scheduled for delivery later this year and will be deployed on board 210-foot and 270-foot medium endurance cutters.

The OTH-IVs deploy from their cutters to deliver boarding teams to vessels of interest during search and rescue; law enforcement; ports, waterways and coastal security; and defense readiness missions. They are 26 feet long and have a top speed of 40 knots. Compared to earlier models, the boats feature increased cargo space and seating, higher speeds, and compatibility with both stern and side-davit launch and recovery systems.

Seventy-eight OTH-IVs have been delivered, including boats for the first seven Legend-class cutters (National Security Cutter, NSC) and the first 28 Sentinel-class cutters (Fast Response Cutter, FRC).

USCG Cutter Boats

The U.S. Coast Guard is acquiring two types of boats to complement its cutter fleet. The long range interceptor II (LRI-II) will help cutter crews extend their interdiction range. The over the horizon IV boats (OTH-IV) will deliver boarding teams to vessels of interest.

While Coast Guard cutters are mission-capable with current boats, the new craft acquired under this program will more specifically meet the Coast Guard’s functional requirements. The LRI-II features increased passenger carrying capability, improved dynamic stability, higher speeds, ballistic protection systems, robust logistics support infrastructure, and appropriate hull designs for stern launch requirements. The OTH-IV rigid-hulled inflatable boat (RHIB, RIB) features high-speed and larger passenger capacity. Both boats are capable of operating from Coast Guard cutters equipped for stern launch.

The cutter boats project will procure up to 10, 35-foot LRI-II, including one for each of the national security cutters. Additionally, the program will procure up to 101, 26-foot OTH-IV, which the Coast Guard will deploy aboard the NSC and some other platforms.

The cutter boats acquisition strategy features the competitive selection of proven, off-the-shelf designs for the LRI-II and OTH-IV.

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