Western Australia-based Austal has launched the first of two Cape Class patrol boats for the Trinidad and Tobago Coast Guard (TTCG), under construction at the company’s Henderson, WA, shipyard.
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Under a $126 million contract awarded by the government of the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago (GORTT), Austal is constructing two 58-metre Cape Class patrol boats for the TTCG, scheduled for delivery in the first half of 2021.
Austal chief executive David Singleton said the launch of the vessel, Hull 398, provided a genuine sense of accomplishment and anticipation throughout Austal’s Australasian business.
“With 10 vessels already in operation with the Australian Border Force and Royal Australian Navy, and a further six ordered by the Navy, the Cape is undoubtedly one of Austal’s most successful and proven naval vessel designs,” Singleton said.
“Now, we’re exporting the Capes to the world, and we look forward to additional international orders that will continue to build Australia’s sovereign shipbuilding capability.”
Austal provides in-service support to both the Cape and Guardian Class patrol boat fleets through an expanding service centre network including Henderson, WA; Cairns, Queensland; and Darwin, Northern Territory.
The new TTCG Capes are based on the 58-metre aluminium monohull patrol boat, first developed by Austal in Australia for the Australian Border Force. The vessels have a 4,000 nautical mile range and 28-day patrol cycle, with a crew of up to 22.
Each Cape is equipped with two high-speed 7.3-metre rigid hull inflatable boats used for intercepting other vessels.
Austal is also delivering 21 Guardian Class patrol boats for 12 Pacific island nations and Timor Leste under the SEA 3036-1 Pacific Patrol Boat Replacement Project, with eight patrol boats delivered since 2018.