Austal christened United States Naval Ship Fall River (JHSV 4) this morning at its state-of-the-art shipyard in Mobile, Alabama. USNS Fall River is the fourth of ten Joint High Speed Vessels (JHSV) that Austal has under contract with the U.S. Navy as part of an overall 10-ship contract worth over $1.6 billion.
The 338-foot catamaran vessel was named Fall River by Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus, after the tenth largest city in the state of Massachusetts. According to Secretary Mabus, “the Fall River represents the physical embodiment of the city of Fall River’s patriotic spirit.”
The ship’s sponsor, Mrs. Diane Bemus Patrick, the First Lady of Massachusetts, has her own record of excellence and distinguished professional and public service. A lawyer, teacher, mother and active member of her community, Mrs. Patrick has extensive experience in many walks of life.
Throughout her life and professional career, Diane Patrick has dedicated herself to various communities, and has served on the Boards of several distinguished civic and non-profit organizations. Diane and Deval Patrick have been married for over two decades and have two daughters, Sarah and Katherine.
“First Lady Patrick is the perfect sponsor for Fall River”, said Austal USA President Craig Perciavalle, “She is tough, just like Fall River will be. She makes a difference, just like Fall River will.”
Over 400 naval and shipyard guests attended the ceremony, which was held underneath the ship, between the iconic twin hulls of the USNS Fall River. The Honorable Ray Mabus, Secretary of the Navy, was the principal speaker at the event.
Austal USA President, Craig Perciavalle, praised the ship, saying, “Fall River is a revolutionary and cost-effective new platform with cutting edge technology, bringing an unprecedented level of flexibility, mobility, volume, efficiency and support to our combatant commanders and nation.” He also praised the shipbuilders, saying “this is a great ship, built by great Navy shipbuilders, master craftsman who work so hard to bring this revolutionary ship to life. You should take pride in this day, in the product you build, and in the service you’re providing this great nation. ”
Austal USA is a full-service shipyard offering design, construction and high-speed vessel service and repair. As Austal USA continues to expand its service and repair capabilities, the company is well-positioned for new business with engineering, test and trials capabilities, and a new waterfront facility on the Mobile Bay waterfront.
Austal has been contracted by the U.S. Navy to build ten 103-meter JHSVs under a 10-ship, $1.6 billion contract, two of which have already been delivered, and eight 127-meter Independence-variant LCS class ships, six of which are a part of a 10-ship, $3.5 billion contract.
Three JHSVs and four LCSs are currently under construction in Austal’s Mobile, Alabama shipyard. Austal will begin production of one more ship in each program before the end of January.
For the LCS and JHSV programs, Austal, as prime contractor, is teamed with General Dynamics Advanced Information Systems, a business unit of General Dynamics. For the JHSV program, General Dynamics is responsible for the design, integration and testing of the navigation and communication systems, C4I and aviation systems.
Austal, January 13, 2014