Austal launched today the second in series Cape Class Patrol Boat (CCPB) during a ceremony at the company’s Australian Defence Facility in Henderson Western Australia. Exactly 1 year to the day after launching Cape st George, Cape Byron was launched some 4 weeks ahead of schedule.
Following maritime tradition, specially minted coins were placed under the keel block of the vessel as a symbol of good fortune on 25th January 2013. These were removed prior to the launch and will be presented to the boat, ACPBS and Austal at a later date. The boat was then lowered into the water using Austal’s slipway facility.
Cape Byron is the second of eight 56-metre patrol boats that are being delivered to the Australian Customs and Border Protection Service (ACPBS) by Austal as Prime Contractor for the design, build and in service sustainment contract valued at approximately $330 million. A contract in which Austal is also using its in-house expertise to develop and integrate sophisticated electronic systems for command, control and communication.
With the vessel in the water, Austal is on target to achieve full vessel completion and sea trials prior to an official naming ceremony and final delivery to Customs and Border Protection in Qtr 2 2014.
Austal President and General Manager Mr Graham Backhouse said, “This special milestone represents a significant achievement by many people from both Commonwealth and Industry who have come together to work as a high performing collaborative team to make this possible. Cape Byron is a state of the art Maritime defence capability that will play a significant role in Operation Sovereign Borders, i.e. protecting Australia’s borders from multiple maritime threats, and has been designed to have greater range, endurance and flexibility, as well as enhanced capability to operate in more severe sea conditions and across longer range than the current Customs and Border Protection and indeed Royal Australian Navy Patrol Boat fleet.
Cape Byron’s launch represents the start of another busy year (2014) for our Australian Defence Facility in Henderson with her being the first of five Cape Class launches and three deliveries scheduled for this year. The overall program continues to be on schedule with full workforce levels increasing by over 100 in recent months to be on target for full production Qtr 2 2014. A workforce that we believe positions Austal well to provide additional state of the art Maritime defence capability to the Commonwealth of Australia either through more Cape Class vessels or indeed as an early replacement of the current Armidale Class Patrol Boats”.
The eight 58 metre aluminium monohulls are due to be delivered between March 2013 and August 2015.
The Cape Class Patrol Boats will be able to:
- Undertake 28 day patrols;
- Sail 4,000 nautical miles before having to refuel;
- Combat the full range of maritime security threats;
- Carry an increased crew to more effectively and safely manage boarding operations;
- Identify, track and intercept an extended range of threats in the maritime domain and gather intelligence and store evidence for matters that may proceed to the courts; and
- Launch two Tender Response Vessels simultaneously.
- Customs and Border Protection patrol boats may be deployed according to aerial surveillance, community reports and/or radar sightings.
They may be used to:
- Counter people, drug and weapons smuggling;
- Apprehend foreign fishing vessels;
- Gather information and intelligence;
- Monitor environmental pollution; and
- Assist management of offshore nature reserves and marine parks.
Press Release, January 7, 2014