Newest USCG FRC Benjamin Bottoms arrives in San Diego
The Coast Guard Cutter Benjamin Bottoms, the fourth California-based 154-foot Fast Response Cutter (FRC), arrived in San Diego, Friday, and will be open for public tours throughout the weekend, the USCG said in its news release.
The Benjamin Bottoms is the last of four FRCs to be homeported at Coast Guard Base Los Angeles-Long Beach and while these ships will be based in Southern California, they will operate throughout the 11th Coast Guard District, which includes all of California and international waters off of Mexico and Central America.
“The Fast Response Cutters are game changing,” said Lt. Lennie Day, the Benjamin Bottoms’ commanding officer. “The increased capability of its communication suite combined with its over-the-horizon, long-range small-boat will significantly aide complex Coast Guard missions.”
The ship is scheduled to be open to the public for tours at the Maritime Museum of San Diego from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., Saturday and Sunday.
FRCs are 154-foot multi-mission ships designed to conduct: drug and migrant interdictions; ports, waterways and coastal security operations; fisheries and environmental protection patrols; national defense missions; and search and rescue. Each cutter is designed for a crew of 24, has a range of 2,500 miles and is equipped for patrols up to five days. The FRCs are part of the Coast Guard’s overall fleet modernization initiative.
FRCs feature advanced command, control, communications, computers, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance equipment as well as over-the-horizon response boat deployment capability and improved habitability for the crew. The ships can reach speeds of 28 knots and are equipped to coordinate operations with partner agencies and long-range Coast Guard assets such as the Coast Guard’s National Security Cutters.
FRCs are named in honor of Coast Guard enlisted leaders, trailblazers and heroes. The four California-based FRCs are: Benjamin Bottoms (WPC-1132), Robert Ward (WPC-1130), Forrest Rednour (WPC-1129), Terrell Horne III (WPC-1131).