• 2021 October 19 15:13

    Bollinger celebrates commissioning of 45th Fast Response Cutter USCGC Emlen Tunnel

    Representatives from Bollinger Shipyards LLC joined senior U.S. Coast Guard officials at USCG Sector Delaware Bay in Philadelphia, PA for the commissioning of one of the newest Sentinel-class Fast Response Cutters (“FRC”), USCGC EMLEN TUNNELL, according to the company's release.

    Named in honor of Coast Guard hero and NFL great Emlen Tunnell, the cutter is the fourth of six FRCs to be home-ported in Manama, Bahrain, which will replace the aging 110’ Island Class Patrol Boats, built by Bollinger Shipyards 30 years ago, supporting the Patrol Forces Southwest Asia (PATFORSWA), the U.S. Coast Guard’s largest overseas presence outside the United States.

    Present at the ceremony were Adm. Karl Schultz, Commandant of the United States Coast Guard, who presided over the ceremony, as well as other senior Coast Guard officials, members of the Tunnel family and representatives from the National Football League and Pro Football Hall of Fame.

    The U.S. Coast Guard took delivery of the 154-foot USCGC EMLEN TUNNELL in Key West, Florida in July of this year. The cutter is the 168th vessel Bollinger has delivered to the Coast Guard over a 35-year period and the 45th FRC delivered under the current program. Notably, the majority of the build occurred despite the COVID-19 global pandemic and six named storms impacting the Gulf region last year, all of which affected Louisiana and two of which made landfall in the state as hurricanes, including Hurricane Laura – a Category 4 storm tied with this year’s Hurricane Ida as the strongest to hit the state since the Great Storm of 1856. Despite these challenges, Bollinger undertook precautions to ensure the health and safety of employees and maintained its record of on-time deliveries to the Coast Guard.

    Earlier this year, Bollinger submitted its proposal to the United States Coast Guard to build Stage 2 of the Heritage-class Offshore Patrol Cutter (OPC) program. If chosen, Bollinger would construct and deliver a total of 11 vessels to the U.S. Coast Guard over the next decade, helping to sustain the Bollinger workforce through 2031. Offshore Patrol Cutters (OPCs) will provide the majority of offshore presence for the Coast Guard’s cutter fleet, bridging the capabilities of the 418-foot national security cutters, which patrol the open ocean, and the Bollinger-built 154-foot FRCs, which serve closer to shore. The OPCs will conduct missions including law enforcement, drug and migrant interdiction, search and rescue, and other homeland security and defense operations.

    About the Fast Response Cutter Platform

    The FRC is an operational “game changer,” according to senior Coast Guard officials. FRCs are consistently being deployed in support of the full range of missions within the United States Coast Guard and other branches of our armed services. This is due to its exceptional performance, expanded operational reach and capabilities, and ability to transform and adapt to the mission. FRCs have conducted operations as far as the Marshall Islands—a 4,400 nautical mile trip from their homeport. Measuring in at 154-feet, FRCs have a flank speed of 28 knots, state of the art C4ISR suite (Command, Control, Communications, Computers, Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance), and stern launch and recovery ramp for a 26-foot, over-the-horizon interceptor cutter boat.

    About Bollinger Shipyards LLC

    Bollinger Shipyards LLC has a 75-year legacy as a leading designer and builder of high performance military patrol boats and salvage vessels, research vessels, ocean-going double hull barges, offshore oil field support vessels, tugboats, rigs, lift boats, inland waterways push boats, barges, and other steel and aluminum products from its new construction shipyards as part of the U. S. industrial base. Bollinger has 11 shipyards, all strategically located throughout Louisiana with direct access to the Gulf of Mexico, Mississippi River and the Intracoastal Waterway. Bollinger is the largest vessel repair company in the Gulf of Mexico region.


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