JDF now boasts Caribbean’s largest mar­itime pres­ence

Stabroek News - - REGIONAL NEWS -

(Ja­maica Gleaner) The Ja­maica De­fence Force (JDF) re­cently re­ceived four new ves­sels from the Gov­ern­ment of the United States (US) un­der the Caribbean Basin Se­cu­rity Ini­tia­tive. The ves­sels, two 38-foot SAFE boats and two 37-foot Bos­ton Whalers, were re­ceived by the JDF Coast Guard last week. Since 2015, the US Gov­ern­ment has do­nated eight in­shore pa­trol ves­sels (IPVs), four SAFE boats, and four Bos­ton Whaler/Jus­tice Ves­sels.

The ac­qui­si­tion of the ves­sels has sig­nif­i­cantly bol­stered the unit’s fleet, now af­ford­ing Ja­maica the largest mar­itime pres­ence in the Caribbean. The JDF Coast Guard now has two county-class off­shore pa­trol ves­sels (OPVs) and 10 IPVs.

“The new ves­sels give us var­i­ous op­tions with re­spect to flex­i­bil­ity and rapid re­sponses within our mar­itime do­main. We will con­tinue to con­duct op­er­a­tions in con­junc­tion with, or in sup­port of, our part­ner na­tions where pos­si­ble”, said Ma­jor Basil Jar­rett, civil-mil­i­tary co­op­er­a­tion of­fi­cer at the JDF, when asked how the new ves­sels would be of ser­vice to Caribbean neigh­bours.

The re­cently do­nated ves­sels now pro­vide the JDF with the best in mar­itime tech­nol­ogy and speed. The SAFE boat, span­ning 12 me­tres in length with a beam three me­tres wide, is able to carry 24 per­sons, that is 20 pas­sen­gers and four crew mem­bers, safely aboard. The larger of the ves­sels also has a fuel ca­pac­ity of 1,500 litres and a max­i­mum speed of 30 knots.

SAFE Boats In­ter­na­tional is an Amer­i­can-owned alu­minum boat man­u­fac­turer and lead­ing sup­plier to mil­i­tary, fed­eral, state, and lo­cal law en­force­ment, as well as fire and res­cue agen­cies through­out North Amer­ica and around the world. SAFE has the they hold a rep­u­ta­tion for de­sign­ing and build­ing highly re­li­able and ex­tremely durable ves­sels that en­able pro­fes­sional crews to ex­cel at their jobs while keep­ing them safe.

The SAFE Full Cabin is an out­board-driven ves­sel used by the US Coast Guard, as well as US Cus­toms and Bor­der Pro­tec­tion. It is a proven plat­form for pa­trols, re­sponse, port se­cu­rity, law en­force­ment, and search and res­cue in nearly any mis­sion en­vi­ron­ment. The fully en­closed cabin can be cli­mate con­trolled with an op­tional gen­er­a­tor, air-con­di­tion­ing sys­tem, and diesel heater.

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