Coasties May Lose Cutters to OMB

Coasties May Lose Cutters to OMB

The Coast Guard, who scrambled to respond to the BP oil well explosion and oil spill, is about to lose an entire class of ships to the masters of federal spending at the Office of Management and Budget.

The Offshore Patrol Cutter, which the Coast Guard is getting ready to begin buying, appears likely to fall to the OMB ax, says one source who closely follows the Coast Guard. Worth somewhere between $300 million and $400 million through the life of the program, the OPC would replace the Famour and Reliance class cutters.

The Offshore Patrol cutter is the successor to the 270′ Famous class and the 210′ Reliance class Medium Endurance Cutters. It would be 300 to 399 feet and possess a range of at least 7,500 nautical miles, depending on which source you talk with.


The program is in its infancy, which may be why OMB wants to cut it before any money starts flowing.  Chris Cavas at Navy Times reported that the Coasties are talking to shipbuilders about the best technical and acquisition approaches for the ship. No contracts are due to be awarded for at least another year, so from OMB’s perspective this looks like the best time to save the most money. However, given the Coasties’ numerous duties — drug interdiction, rescues, anti-piracy ops, homeland security patrols, oil cleanup etc etc — it seems a strange time to reduce the service’s ability to do long-range patrols with ships that should be more efficient and more effective.

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Easy solution. Reduce the Coast Guards duties. Why the hell are they doing joint training with foreign navies?

This is a real backwards step by the Administration in support of national security, border patrol, and the war against drugs. The CG has one of the broadest mandates of any agency, and one of the oldest set of equipment with which to meet its mandate. Why would we as a Nation not want modern, efficient ships in the hands of our Coast Guard?

How much longer can the existing cutters last?

Ii still think most of the drug interdiction could be done with helicopters and hand grenades.

Typical conclusion reached by people who have never served a day. Why don’t we cut all of the billions in special affirmative action programs? Put that money to good use instead of harming the Country as a whole for the apparent good of the few.

Why don’t we cut both?

Funny thing, the Coast Guard actually needs cutters to protect the coast. Cutters that actually work and can go places. I wonder how many days the WHECs spent on patrol in the last year. I know the one my son is stationed on has spent about a week at sea in the last year (after spending months in drydock previously) with no patrol scheduled in the foreseeable future. What a waste of manpower and money with zero contribution to any of the Coast Guard’s varied missions and responsibilities.

Now what gives anyone the idea that the administration actually wants to protect our borders, interdict drugs, or protect our coasts? What have they actually done, as opposed to talk, that would indicate any of those things are a priority? The last I heard the Coasties didn’t have a union, or control large blocks of votes, and most of the off shore drilling has been, or is in the process of being shut down.

I’d rather have the cutters and cover the globe, than an overbudgeted strike fighter program (JSF).

I think it is ridiculous to not give the coast guard the equipment it needs to perform it’s mission. But in reality I think they need to buy realistic gear as should the rest of the military. A 100 to 200 ft cutter could just as easily perform all the required missions with the mandated min range and more speed, many a 50 to 100 foot boats make trans ocean crossings so a military vessel should be able to do it as well with sufficient firepower and survelence gear on board and a smaller helo. a number of MK5 patrol boats (not the MK5 SOC, but same mfg. company) could be purchased for the cost of one of the proposed cutters for coastal patroling, rescue and interdiction missions, then fewer large cutters would be needed for blue water ops, more bang and boats for the same buck.

I believe the issue is whether the Coast Guard needs three sizes of cutters and could live/work better with two: a few 400 foot National Security Cutters (like a regional flagship) and many 150 foot or so patrol boats. Sounds like the Offshore Patrol Cutter was looking for a mission. What can it do that more smaller patrol boats can’t? I know from looking at the operating hour stats that the Coasties desperately need more patrol boats. That’s the most critical mission.

Who will take over the duties that you would take away from the Coast Guard?

They train foreign navies because most of them are actually coast guards.

Because most foreign navies conduct missions similiar to what our CG does.

I served on a 210′ back in the 80’s and they were all getting there midlife overhaul then so you know they are just about worn out now.

That doesn’t mean the Coast Guard has to do it.

The Coast Guard is having difficulty conducting it’s duties here with ageing equipment, and we have them out in the Black Sea doing things our Navy should be doing.

You mean the HECs in Charleston that needed serious overhaul because of their use past original retirement date? Had the Coast Guard been funded properly and been budgeted for new cutters sooner, your son would have a job underway versus at the pier.

Lets see… train another country to take care of the bad guys off their shores, or just sit back and wait for them to come here… Hmmmmm.….

Yeah, if we don’t have the Coast Guard doing joint training around the world, our enemies will invade the waters off of Florida.

The navy wanst to come in to the shallow littoral areas , and coasties want to go deep ‚but where ever they go they do a great job. Obama should stop giving outas much foreign aid (welfare benefits) and start funding the equipment that these fine folks (who we are asking to do extraordinary things) need to do their job with.
I don’t know if they keep the drug money that they seize, but they should if they don’t , but they (the FED.S) probably give it away to the people who are making the drugs, as foreign aid.

…“says one source who closely follows the Coast Guard.“
This entire story is based on one annonymous source? Wheres the credibility for this story?

Why not utitlize some of the Navy’s ready reserve fleet?

Don’t expect common sense from the federal government.

Good thinking! Lets replace 40 year old ships that at least were designed for the CG and replace them with 40 year old ships that were designed for twice as many people and three times the fuel.

probably the french or perhaps a Islamic sheetite cutter as long as obama is ccic

Boomer I don’t think you realize just how small 50ft is in a big ocean. I’m a 41ft coxswain in the CG and after about 4 hrs on the waves land and a still rack sounds pretty good. And those 100 ft boats making trans atlantic crossings… Only under sail my friend. Don’t think the druggies are gonna wait for us to haul in the main top gallant and come up into the wind to board ‘em.
Truth is all of our fleet is aging. My 41 foot UTB is 36 years old and barely makes 20kts. The 45RM-b its replacement, isn’t gonna get me to Mexico but its going to be a big improvement.
You fight a battle not only along a line but in depth (Defense in depth) Better to have more assets out in the big blue then close to home where weather and conditions beat the ever living crap outta us. And a 200–400 ft cutter can carry 2 to 4 boats and 1 or 2 helos. There are days even in the Gulf of Mexico I’m barely able to stand just from fighting the seas.
We need new large class cutters. We aren’t asking for frigates and destoryers. What we don’t need is uninformed people making the calls for us.

Easy solution, end the war on drugs. The CG would easily be able to handle it’s duties if they didn’t have to deal with drug interdiction. It would also same the fed about $64billion a year out of the budget. (Thats about a1/10th of the total military budget) If you tax it you might be able to turn that $64billion cost into a multi-billion dollar revenue stream.

I looked at that painting, where are the portholes? Must be like a fart locker down below.

Also no windows or wings on the bridge, how do they conn the ship if they can’t see where they are going?

Fact is…The Coast Guard performs their missions day in and day out, in time of war AND in time of peace. They do more, with less, for longer periods of time.…and why?.…because Americans don’t understand what the Coast Guard does. Therefore, they never receive the money they deserve. Example? Sure…here goes: The Navy spends a minimum of $20 Billion dollars PER Ohio Class Submarine. The Coast Guards Annual Budget request for 2010 was $55.1 Billion dollars. That’s less than 3 Ohio Class subs that will be doing exactly NOTHING in the year 2011.…even though there are now 14 of them officially on the books.

The Coast Guard’s 5 major focuses in 2010 were Counter-terrorism, Border Security, Immigration, Disaster Preparedness, and Response and Recovery. I guess we’ve gotten to a point where NONE of this is actually important anymore. Sleep well folks…there are men and woman standing the watch tonight with old, beat-up, sub-par equipment, doing their best to make it work. Coasties Need Money too!

This OPC was supposed to eventually take the place of the aging 270′ and 210′ fleet

The Navy and Navy Reserve can not run the same operations as the Coast Guard. There is a real good reason why there are 5 branches of service yet only 4 of them are DOD. The Coast Guard can run “Police” style enforcement missions that the other 4 branches are not allowed to perform because they are restricted by international treaties.

John,

This source has excellent access within the service and within the White House. Credibility lies in the quality of a source — not whether you have one, two, three or more sources. In the national security world, if you can find two sources willing to be cited you are likely well behind the curve.

Smitty, the image is a representation of a possible model — not a picture of a real ship.

HEC availability in the last fiscal year was 20%. I think it is criminal that we send Coasties out to sea in ships in which major casualties to systems are a way of life. Fleet replacement programs are so far behind it would be comical if we weren’t talking about our nation’s defense. Instead of playing around with fake “shovel ready” projects lets speed up fleet replacement and buy things we actually need.

I am on your side. I am troubled that having made the decision to revitalize some of the older Cutters that they are not back in service. I don’t understand why the CG does not hold suppliers and contractors responsible for not fulfilling their contracts properly. Where is the refund and damages for the 123’s?

And their are no gun mounts—-Being a old time sea dog I can see why the project was killed—We stood look out on the open bridge in the North Pacific—A shot of medical brandy was given to the bridge watch seamen after coming off watch.…The weenies in the pilot

house didn’t get one. ;-)

One Word Taxpayer: RANGE! The smaller cutters don’t have the range nor can they be out to sea for more than four days w/out having to pull in for food/stores. This is a disgrace, yet I’m not surprised that this Administration is willing to cut these ships. I guess the WMEC’s will have to be around for another forty years. Thanks PRESBO, although I shouldn’t be surprised since you don’t even remember that, Yes, we actually are MILITARY! Props to the guy who called him on it last week in Afghanistan

The CG has always, throughout it’s entire history been asked to do more with less. They were always able to get the job done and will continue to do so. The coasties are expendable so we suck them dry for 20 years beating them up on 30 year old boats and the nation still gets it’s result so what’s the problem? Patrol boats are designed for “shallow water” 4–10 days out. then they need fuel, food etc… HECs are for long patrols ‘deep water” 2–3 months. Where’s the middle? Right now the middle is 30 yrs old. Military boats are designed for a specific mission. not all around stuff. a 150 foot civilian boat may be able to cross the ocean at 20 kts, a 150 military boat is designed to do twice that speed so that makes the distance half as much at a minimum, (the faster you go on the water the less fuel efficient, the bigger the engine)…aka coastal patrol boat. The new 150′ patrol boat the CG is building will not be able to fill the gap, and the HEC program is in process but is slow and expensive. Military boats are also built to a higher standard than civilian boats, (bullets, torpedos, bombs etc…) that means $$$$$$$.

Good Evening Folks,

Times and missions are changing. The USCG already is over missioned and something has to give with the reduction of 1,300 Guardsmen in this current budget.

As discussed in another post her the Arctic Mission that is coming on faster then expected when the agreement was made with Canada during the Bush (43) administration on responsibility for handling the opening of the NW passage.

The ice patrols, ice breaking and weather ships have been traditional Coast Guard missions but with the opening of the passage from Pacific to Atlantic this will become the most traveled surface line of communication on the planet. In all likely hood by mid century this will be the USN’s major AO.

When the agreement was made it was assumed that it would be well past mid century when this would become an issue, the Republican were still saying Global Warming was an Al Gore hoax. In a way it was, Gore like Bush a legacy C student didn’t and doesn’t understand what is happening.

While the average world temp. has started to drop in 2009 other geologic forces are at play including the earths magnetic field moving in the opposite direct then it was expected. It’s happening now, the Russians are already trying to opening the NE passage this winter, the money at steak is huge.

The USN will be starting from scratch in developing and making operational ice-hardened vessels and ice-breakers as well as training Navy and Marine forces to defend this area. The vulnerably of this are will not go unnoticed to terrorists.

The USCG will still have the mission in the costal and offshore waters and suitable vessels will be built for that mission. Coast Guard Vessels are not built to the same standards that the USN’s are.

ALLONS,

Byron Skinner

We did that with the CGC ALEX HALEY. That ship is a tremendous wast of money and the project is a flop. It got us bye in a hard time but it is not the right tool for the job.

Just paint it with expoxy rust proof paint and finishing paint and it will be as good as new

Just paint it with epoxy rust proof paint and finishing paint and it will be as good as new.

The USCG doesn’t do things that our Navy does, just things foreign navies do. They support things like EEZ issues (fisheries protection, off-shore infrastructure regulation, pollution mitigation, etc), law enforcement, and illegal immigration. Not a lot of expertise in the USN because that is why we have a USCG. We do these things overseas because we depend on the high seas, which belong to all nations and all nations have an obligation to protect and secure. Since we have agreed to international treaties to this effect, it is the highest law in the land (check your Constitution). Additionally, if foreign countries can do effective law enforcement (things like stopping smuggling), it reduces the effort we need to do off Florida.

Looks to be par for the course for 0bama.….

I wonder if there is a possibility the Coast Guard could piggyback with the Navy and use a modified LCS design. More being built would lower the cost for the Navy, and might produce some savings for the Coast Guard as well.

–K

those 210’s just went through ANOTHER mid-life.

The 270′ cutters were built in the mid 80s and have had mid live overhauls. They’ll last another 15 years, but the problem is that getting new cutters built takes 15 years to do. Govt purchasing goes very slowly, especially for large dollar items.

Your premise is sound (reduce Coastie duties) but your choice of which duties to reduce is a poor one. How about eliminating the mid– and long-range patrol duties that directly relate to this class of cutter? No real loss to the CG (more comments follow):

The war on drugs (one of this class’s primary missions) is a farce with 0 return on investment. As for the other supposed returns on investment on this class of cutter, they also don’t conduct very many search and rescue cases and most shore stations can handle the offshore interdiction ops for boarding inbound foreign vessels. (Shift all of this class’s Coasties to shore stations and ALL stations could do it.)

Give international waters SAR completely to the Navy since they’re out there and already doing it (understanding there are complications for this, but the Air Force already handles a ton of inland SAR so we have precedent, not to mention this is what most other countries’ navies quite sensibly do).

Relative to our national risk, long-term loitering capability outside of our customs waters is just not a real need; better to leverage long-range, shore-based sensing technology and shore-based rapid response teams.

Yank these cutters but not their money. (Yank the 421-foot “National Security Cutters”, too, which are even more farsical for a COAST Guard.) Divert the money to improved coastal patrol cutters (replacements for the 110-foot cutters), including ocean-going ice-breaking tugs for the North Pacific and North Atlantic. Halt the long-range ice-breaking and science missions and let NOAA and the Navy continue to do the good work they already do there.

However, training foreign “navies” (usually coast guards) enhances global interoperability, maritime domain awareness, partnership with US interests, and meets the needs of well over 15 international conventions, articles, and agreements, so it’d be a very bad idea indeed to eliminate that mission. That said, mobile training teams could do the training better on any day of the week than breakdown (or brand-spanking new) cutters on overseas deployments.

For all the disappointed deck watch officers who yearn for command on this class of cutter, transfer them to NOAA and the Navy (which should have been their first choices, anyway). The COAST Guard doesn’t need blue water sailors, even in times of war.

COAST Guards are green and brown water sailors because we need kick ass multi-mission professionals close to shore to save babies, birds, and shipping just as much as we need burn-‘em-to-the-waterline grey hulls keeping America safe by bringing the war to the warmongers. Scuttle the entire existing class of cutters for reefs and good riddance. Alexander Hamilton designed the Revenue Cutter Service (one of the CG’s ancestral agencies) to linger along the coasts, after all.

So, good for the OMB in one way, but shame on them in another, because, guaranteed, the money will go “poof” instead getting diverted to critical operational vulnerabilities.

And overhaul or maintain each ship every year. It like a car, if you maintain it right it will run smoothly for life.

Because they’re not the right ships for appropriate Coast Guard missions. We as a Nation should want our Coast Guard to have effective tools and people for key mission areas. This class of cutter is purposeless and exists only because some previous Coasties wished they were Navy.

Just maintain it. It’s cost effective. Look at the Ruskies they have WWII bombers that they still use up today.

Bingo. But why have these cutters at all?
Having been stationed on a WHEC and several other cutters, as far as I can tell the Coast Guard is failing to substantiate the function of these larger cutters — largely because these classes of cutter are ludricrous for true Coastie missions (coastal safety, security, and environmental stewardship). Coasties belong along the Coast. These “Medium Endurance” cutters were failed attempts to play Navy with grey hullers back in the 70s and 80s. In fact, the 270s were botched attempts to replace the 378s, only budget cuts and contract mis-management caused them to get chopped very much shorter.

Couldn’t agree more. Yours is similar to a proposal killed in the 80s by a bunch of blue-water wannabes.

And I feel you should get a couple of large cutters, but at the same time I have made crossings in Cyclones, deep pennetrations in MK5’s, and Mk4’s, PT boats of WWII made lots of ocean crossings. For patrolling shipping lanes you definately need a cutter, for coastal and drug interdictions a 100 ft fast gun boat will come in handy especialy if they patrol in pairs. I’m all in favor of you guys getting gear — I just think you like the rest of the military need to look at what is avail right now at lower cost, The Visby class corvett would be a good large cutter and you could buy 2 for the cost of the proposed design.

Ready Reserve Fleet! Give me a break! Do you have any idea the time and expense it is to bring one of those out of mothballs and upgrade it with the needed technology and then put it on a aging platform?

I’m talking about the Coast Guards counter terrorism mission.

As a former standard and non-standard boat coxswain and DWO, I hear you! But rethink the premise — we don’t need trans-Atlantic hauls and blue water patrols. The 70s DEA-backed “training” missions in Central America were far more effective than blue boaters chasing shadows (as I did during the late 90s on a WHEC). No discredit to the 378ers knocking down big hauls, especially after HITRON. But their talent was wasted on a stupid tactical solution to the drug supply chain.

The likelihood of effective interdiction decreases the farther from the target port you try and conduct surface patrols, so blue water interdiction will never substantiate the material and personal cost on Coasties. Kill drugs at their source: illegal (effectively “uncontrolled” controlled status); in demand (counter-culture, cheap, glamorous, and effective); and plentiful (destroy chains of supply, provide more profitable options to farmers). Prohibition didn’t work in the 30s because people like booze. This prohibition is just as stupid and just as much of a waste of skilled Coasties’ time as the earlier Prohibition. New cutters won’t decrease the ineffectiveness of either the drug mission or improve the return on investment in this class of cutters.

Are you for real?

Oh boy. Things have changed since Johnny Depp sailed the Spanish Main.

We finally figured out that bridge wings are irrelevant wastes of good conning space. Now they’re wrapped by windows and people use cameras and less than 40 people on the bridge to moor and maneuver. Those funny black squares along the top of the forward superstructure in the drawing are windows.

Habitable (and machinery) spaces have had vents since the late 1800s. Vents got all sorts of updates after the introduction of chemical and nuclear weapons. Portholes are great for flooding ships, but not much else.

Might as well bring the USS Constelation out of retirement in Baltimore and send her back into patrol duty. Steel hulls eventually rust away. What is the expected life span of the current hulls on duty?

Where do you get the $20 billion number for an Ohio?
The conversion of 4 of them to SSGN was about $2.8 billion and original cost per boat was approximately $2 billion per boat. So total program procurement costs are approximately $38.8 billion. O&M costs are another matter.

The USCG needs the money and ships, but throwing out ridiculous numbers to make a point will not get it for them.

Coast Guard has been given the short end for many years, but they keep on trucking any way they can even piggy backing on Navy ships with Guard detachments and sometimes US Customs agents. It works out great with the better technology on the Navy ships. The Guard needs new ships for sure, The only question is do they need blue water ships other than ice breakers? To me a 100 ft fast patrol boat with carbon fiber hull, floating hydraulic decks, modern electronics, 45 nkts sutained speed, bushmaster chain gun & 4 50 cals carrying a faster 30′ speed boat with a 20mm chain gun that can be deployed at speed would be the hot ticket item for security and interdiction instead of 400 ft cutters and is avail right now. I believe they should be protecting our coast lines and not patroling the world unless as a det on a Navy ship.

Having sailed on 3 different WHECs, 720, 719 and 718 and many other vessels accumulating over 17 years of sea duty. I found that we were out of home port (Boston) about 300 days a year (1970s ). These times included repatriation of Haitians, patrol of Caribbean ( district 7 OPS ). 1980s still included D-7 OPS, invasion of Grenada (protecting US Citizens) and continued patrols for illegal immigrants. Mid 1980s, West Coast, Seattle USCGC Mellon, patrols to the North protecting our economic zone (200) mile limit, these were short patrols 30 to 60 days. These ships are 50 years old. The WMECs were built for off shore SAR and patrol of our economic zone. Their time at sea is very limited by the amount of stores that could be carried. Why have these cutters at all? Yes we could arm the US fishing vessels in the Bearing Sea to fend off poachers from other countries. I could go on for a long time. CWO-3 JFM Retired

Not so fast, in the last real war we learned that you needed open bridge, and bridge wings for anti-air defense. Bridge wings are also usefull for an all round veiw when manevuring in congested areas. Portholes are necessary to let in light and fresh air, and to allow people to see out of, This is especially so in berthing areas. No one likes feeling like they are closed up in a steel box. We are building ships, not submarines, which are only boats.

The Coast Guard does a great job, this is true, but they are not the Navy, nor are they particularly a law enforcement agency, although they have some of both missions. Maybe their missons should be reduced to maintaining aid to navigation, search and rescue. enforcement of safety rules etc. Let the other agencies perform the jobs for which they were designed.

Regarding the age of the CG’s vessels. There is not reason why with good maintenance and upkeep, along with periodic upgrades and replacement of parts/structure as need that a ship or boat cannot last for centuries, not just a few decades. Quit treating everything as expendable.

I wonder if they have ever thought of cutting the OMB budget to save money?

Don’t slam stuff just because it is old. Some things are well made and stand the test of time. A WWII gun will sink you just as quick as some of the whiz bang modern stuff and is probably more reliable. Machinery and vessels that are maintained, upgraded and rebuilt when needed will last forever, and are a lot cheaper in the long run than buying newer models that cost more and are more cheaply put together. We are not talking air to air combat, fleet actions, or world wide sea power as being a CG mission.

When wooden ships planks rotted or were broken they were replaced. Steel plates and frames can also be replaced with new. There should be nothing on a vessel that cannot be replaced, rebuilt, or renewed. Instead, in our current culture when something gets a little worn we want to throw it away and replace it with something new that often isn’t a well made. There is no need to replace perfectly good ships that just need a little TLC and maintenance. That is unless is was a really poor design to start with.

Nice to see that not much has changed since my tour back in the late 70’s. More duties, less money, making do with ships that are falling apart. Thank you, Uncle Sugar, for taking such good care of us.

Boomer, the idea is to keep the ship ON TOP of the water, and be able to complete the mission regardless of the weather. The ship sizes you mention would definitely restrict the utilization for foul weather operations. I have been in weather where the Navy moved all their units out of the area for safety. The Coast Guard routinely operates in conditions where others would not go, and at close quarters to boot!

For who ever thinks the Coast Guard doesn’t need new ships look at the USCGC Acushnet and the USCGC Smilax and others. These ships have been sitting in the salt for almost 70 years you can only put so much money into the maintanance of these vessles until it just makes more since to buy new, but as said before the Coast Guard is used to being short changed and will continue to due their duty with less. Just hope that when the next natural disastor hits they can make it on thier small budget. If Katrina happened last year the Coast Guard would see thier money this year.

The CG is an org. that never knows the meaning to the word NO! NO we are not getting rid of personnel, NO we are not sailing or meeting requested mission objectives on 30–40 year old vessels and the list goes on. Having sailed on 5 ships in 26 years the average age was near the mid-30’s for these vessels. Someone has to just say NO! There are alot of places that we can cut from the Federal Budget to aid the Coast Guard just look at the stim-u-late-us package and its wasteful spending. Either fund the out fit or give them a reduced mission set to match the budget they are allowed to have. Put the current powers in charge on a ride in the Gulf of AK or New England in mid winter for a ride on one of these aged queeens. The tune would change.

I just read on http://​www​.fredsplace​.org about a 210 that came out of an 18 month yard overhaul and sprung a leak in her hull on the way back to home port. I was on the commissioning crew of the USCGC Dauntless WMEC 624, in 1968. I can’t believe any of the Reliance class cutters are still at sea. The crews do an unbelievable job of maintaining them. As usual the USCG will get what’s left over after everyone else is happy.

I can’t help but think the way out of this is to make a variant of the navy LCS. Either variant has a very similar pop gun on the foredeck, a helo bay, ability to launch small craft etc. The trimaran version might be more comfy at sea but wouldn’t be any worse than a 210′. By having a Joint project the development costs will be spread over more hulls.

I retired from the Coast Guard 12 years ago and every ship I served on was no less then 5 years OLDER then me. I’m 61 now. The CGC Ingham was designed for ocean station patrols (Cri. 1935). CGC Southwind & Westwind (Cri. 1944 &1945) were OLD when I was on them. The old 82′ were good boats in their day but beat you to death when it gets rough. 15 to 25 degree rolls were common. Some of the new ships the navy is getting make much more sence on patrol around here then playing war games around Africa. If you want to stay on patrol for more then a couple of days a larger cutter in WORKING CONDITION is required.

ETCS (ret.)

AFTER 10 YRS SEA DUTY FROM 53 TO 73,ABOARD 327 (2) ICEBREAKERS,A 180,227,EAGLE, IT LOOKS
LIKE NOTHING HAS CHANGED-DESK JOCKIES WHO HAVEN‘T BEEN THERE STILL RULE ????? WHAT
A SHAME THEY HAVEN‘T THE EXPERIENCE MOST OF US HAVE HAD,THEY SHOULD HAVE TO DO THE
ATLANTIC PATROLS FOR A YEAR (A,B,C,D,E,) AND PACIFIC ALSO.

The Obama Whitehouse is trying to cut the military and refused to defend our borders. Why should this suprise anyone. The less we can defend our shores the better they seem to like it. Pretty soon we will
be restricted to pea shooters but no peas.

Not buying this class of cutter will be one of the worse descisions ever made. I think most of you commenting don’t realize how bad off these existing cutters are.

When i was in the Navy there were many small ships in the reserve fleet why couldn’t the Coast Guard be given all they need. I was in search and rescue and the Coast Guard is a great outfit but plays second fiddle to the other services. Its typical when the crap hits the fan the Coast Guard is the first one called. There is just so many wasteless programs the govt supports maybe they should get thier priorities straight. Here in Memphis it seems like half the commmunity draw govt checks for being crazy.

Roger that!

I guess strategic patrol or being in the yards counts as doing nothing.

(1) The Coast Guard budget is about $10 billion a year.

(2) For the price the CG is paying to keep its old boats repaired, they could lease new boats that meet their mission.

(3) Underfunding the CG has been going going on for years. It was Reagan, Carter, Bush, Clinton and Bush Jr. Obama is just last in a long line.

(4) The CG leadership needs to lead by getting out of the box and telling Congress what they need, not what OMB tells them.

I got out 40 years ago. Most of the big white ones in use today were around then. How can we look at ourselves in the mirror when we sent young men and women out on a fleet that old and worn out? Does one of these beasts have to sink and take its crew to the bottom before someone stands up and says ” no more”? Do you think the navy has any ships that are as old as the CG fleet and work just as hard? God bless those people keeping the Coast Guard afloat and helping us out when we get into trouble out there.

Good Evening Folks,

Good to see old home week for the USCG here, we don’t talk about them nearly enough.

One issue that Colin didn’t bring up, and I assuming that he is watching how it plays out, is the term of Adm Thad Allen as the 23ed. Commandant of the USCG. It seems from early signs that the Admiral was much better at PR then running the USCG, but that’s for another day.

Some good news for all you who want to spend, spend… Today the third installment payment on CVN-79 was made contract #N00024-09-C-2116 for $323,611,867.00.

For BOOMER and his fellow Bubbleheads the Navy didn’t forget you today. Funding for the next generation of SSBN’s, N00024-11-C-2109 was funded today for $7,360,657.00.

These two fundings answer a couple of questions of where cuts will not take place.

ALLONS,
Byron Skinner

It is more a matter of design and watertight integrity that keeps a ship afloat and not it’s size, Yes the Navy when it can moves ships away from rough seas — this is due to personnel though and not ship designs, I’ve done more than my share of north atlantic state 5 sea days having to maintain long watches because of most of the crew being sea sick, sprained body parts and so forth, the coast guard deals with the same thing. Also the NAVY does do at sea rescues as well as part of thier mission. If I had it my way I would gladly build the guard a number of 250 ft nuclear powerd fast ships with all the modern bells and whistles, I enjoyed working along side with the guard on many occasions — but they are over tasked and under budget due to the feds not knowing what to actualy do with them, They need to speak up meaning they need a leader with a pair who will say enough is enough. As far as I am comcerned they can have all the current LCS ships and 1/2 the remainder contracted because they more suit the Coast Guard mission than the Navy’s,

Depends on what you are asking — My posts are based on my 24 yrs active duty and current position within the govt seeing many things that upset me on a daily basis under the management of easy chair politicians with no knowledge of the real military.

USN has bigger budget than the Coast Guard and wastes majority of the funding. The USN replaces ships every 10 years. CG uses their ships over 50 years and still succeeds in their missions. Something is wrong with this picture and that is governement is not working more effecient. We need both services but we need both of them to be effecient. When it becomes to budgeting, its personnel, benefits, and pay that goes why we are not working together for more effeciency in the Federal governement?

Well said Steve; when we are planning on giving and paying for “smart phones” for every soldier this just proves that this administration cares NOTHING about this country’s safety or our freedoms!! Do away with the joint train with foreign navy’s and add MORE time on the water protecting THIS COUNTRY !!!!!!!!!!

Coast Guard.…Doing more with less since 1790.….The most crapped on and most called on service around. It is the only organization that has a Law Enforcement and Military Mission. The Navy cannot intercept ships on waters adjacent (not getting into all the specifics here) just because they are suspicious. The Navy cannot take actions unless certain conditions are met. The Coast Guard has LEGAL authority to intercept and DETAIN people (and make arrests) without people being able to say it is military on civilian. There is a reason the Coast Guard sent PSU’s and other Blue Guard to New Orleans; because they could take Law Enforcement action. There is a reason the 82nd Airborne could not walk around with loaded weapons (officially) and detain/arrest people. The Coast Guard fleet is outdated and falling apart, lets waste money on Naval Vessels that have fought a Naval engagement when???? It is a matter of priority at this point, Homeland Security.….off my soap box.…Semper Paratus

The main problem is, that’s an ugly boat.

200 foot ships can’t safely conduct fisheries patrols in the Bering Sea … you need a lage, stable platform to safely operate in what are routinely 20–30 foot seas. They need to be stable in order to safely launch and recover helocopters an small boats with law enforcement boarding teams.

The Coast Guard’s fiscal year 2010 budget appropriated by Congress was $10.4 billion. $55 billion is grossly incorrect.

maybe they should buy one of the new LCS class boats, they are in production and would not need much of a change to make it ready for the CG, is has a low draft , a helo deck, mission containers(that can go in and out depending on what type mission they do) .,they are big enough to handle large storms , it would meet their needs. they would not have to pay for R&D

Good Afternoon Folks,

I see some are thinking perhaps that the LCS would be suitable for the USCG. Not so the, USCG is looking for medium and high endurance cutters that are in the $50-$70 million price range, the last quotes was $750 million each.

The irony is what Chris said. The USN has to scrap ships after 20–30 years while the USCG has ships a half century old and still in service. It is noted that the typical USCG large hull is deployed considerably longer during it life time then the typical USN hull.

Any fool, I guess an exception must be made for the 437 member of Congress here, can look at a cheap globe and see that most of the planet we reside on is under water, in these most uncertain of times both sea services need to be fully funded.

ALLONS,
Byron Skinner

They put the choppers and the .50 semi auto to good use now. Love it!! (Kinder/Gentler u know)

I sent them an email saying that exactly, with the addition of taking back some of the raises that Congress voted for themselves! Lets get real!!

Maybe the Coast Guard should all apply for their mail in slips and let the powers that be know how they feel by their vote!! Come on Ladies and Gentlemen of the USCG…make your voice heard!!

The LCS-2 trimaran is going to be a maintenance black hole for the Navy. Where was that factor in the selection evaluation?

The fact of the matter is that Admiral Papp like Admiral Allen has yet to give congress or the white house any reason to trust the money will not wasted.

Thanks for clarifying. I was not debating the number of sources, but the mysterious and credible source whom you said “follows the Coast Guard.” As it is written, one must balance it with all of the rest of the blogs in cyber space and see if there is credibility in the rumor based on the credibility of the source or sources.

The Navy has been retiring the Perry class FFGs, some have been sold to foreign navies. Could the CG use these vessels?
They have gas turbines, twin helo hangers and a flight deck. I admit that the missile launcher is over the top but the hulls are sturdy and they are not much larger than the proposed cutter pictured.
I’m a retired Navy BMC so you Coasties will have to help me out on this.
Can they do the job?

i heard they are selling the cgc hamilton to the phillipine navy

Wow. Nothing changes. When I came in 39 years ago, we had leftover WWII hand-me-downs. Just refocus the missions of the Navy and CG. Leave projection of force to the Navy and coastal protection to the CG. But of course that makes lots of O2 and O3 commands on WPBs but few O5 and O6 commands — so it just isnt going to happen.

Absolutely 0 against the Navy, damn fine service but people like you are the ones who keep stupid uneccesary rivalries going when we are all same team. Step into the shoes, pick up a weapon stand a post, or shut the hell up.

my cutter is 56 years old

Way to go OMB! The men and women of the Coast Guard have always been there when we
have needed them. They need equipment so they can continue to do their jobs. What kind of
sense does it make to short change the heroes that rescue thousands of people a year
were there during the oil spill and on the front lines on the war on drugs and protecting
our waters? It doesnt!

Our Guardians deserve better!

You have no clue do you?

If the Feds would have taken some of the money they gave to GM, they could have built the new CG ships, put lots of people to work doing that, and saved operating costs vice the out dated ships they are using. Simple economics.
The CG always gets the short end. Many of the foreign navies are like our CG and that is why it makes more sense for the CG to train them than our navy. We need all the help we can get.

Who knows? I was on a 180′ buoy tender that was commissioned in 1948 I think. USCGC Gentian. That boat had overhauls and it caught fire once when I was attached. So to say these boats will last 15 more years is not saying they will make it. But saying they have to make it, by any means necessary. The USCG gets the bad end of the stick when it comes to budgeting and with the way Mr. Obama has been dragging his feet with things I am surprised that these cutters will ever see the light of day ever. However there is the hope that things will change and that someone will see that spending tons of money to a lost cause (war) can go to good programs like this.

There is a reason the navy retires ships.…they need too much maintenance. The CG took some of the Navy 179’s and it cost 1/2 as much to rebuild them as it would to replace them and yet you still have a n old ship. After the CG fixed them, the Navy took them all back. How much money do you put into your old car before you replace it?

Many of the CG cutters have unique missions– navy ships do not readily fit into; they can do it, but not as well. A few examples I remember were the HEC class I sailed on. We had turbines (like a navy frigate) and two diesels. We sailed thousands of miles on 30 day back to back Alpats, often on a single diesel, alone, doing 6–9 knots, sipping fuel sparingly. Very occasionally we used the turbines in a SAR situation; we would burn one months worth of fuel in 2–3 days. So the whole mentality is different– Presence, single ship ops, covered with radios of all types. Frequently using other agencies (use your imagination) to carry out wildly interesting missions. — The ship has the room for scientists, navy visitors, etc. Many Navy ships have no spare room for these things. And the Cutters were not as capable in defense ops when compared to the needs of fleet exercises. But those 5//38 caliber guns were the most accurate and sought after in Vietnam on the gun line, wearing. So they did an important job– flexibility is key. The Coasties made a lot of mistakes trying to be rock stars in the failed acquistion program a few years ago; they are paying the price now.

the 210’s we’re in service when i was in the coast guard in 1975 to 79 and it is very reminicient of the carter admin to have cutters tied to the pier due to no funds for fuel. great job democrat liberals ha ha ha

The Diligence is still sailing after 50+ yrs, about time for a new one.

We have done it to ourselves. We constantly pride ourselves on “doing more with less” and never seem to grasp the next step of the procurement mindset. Of the services, percentage wise, we have been reluctant to ask for high dollars to get good funding. There is a painting of a revenue cutter that has a cannon on wagon wheels lashed down to the deck. We probably borrowed it from an Army unit. We have to fundamentally think differently when addressing budget issues on large scale. Remember Deep Water?

Hi Boomer–
I assume you haven’t spent much time at sea. Having done 12+ deep sea (bigger than 300 feet) and a couple of years on a little 210 cutter (way UNDERSIZED on some occassions), I can assure you that the CG NEEDS ships of decent size. When I first joined way back we had about 30, now there is only a dozen. The ships are OLD and need replacement. They also need to maintain miltary readiness for involvement around the globe as they have been for over 200 years.

This is a political move to simply put off what needs to be done so that in the short term the deficit won’t look as horrid as it really is as we borrow big-time so we can give away more.

Coast Guard, saving lives every day, oldest branch of military, always ready, and what does our Government do to make their job safer and give them what they need to protect the homeland? Not a damn thing..The Coast Guard is hands down the most under appreciated branch in the military! Semper Paratus!

Anyone who says US Coast Guard ships are built different than what ships the US Navy has got it all wrong.
In time of war the Coast Guard falls under operational direction by the US Navy, thus ships in the US Coast
Guard WHEC and others could integrate operationally with the US Navy. Hoever, the now operational needs
of the US Coast Guard must be addressed.

A long time? USCGC Conifer (WAGL-301) decommissioned 6/2000 after service since 1942. They can be made to last and the Coast Guard is the best at keeping them going.

Yeah keep kicking the one service that doesn’t spend much but does more with less all the time. Typical government BS again!!!!!

Michael, You hit the nail on the head ! The Coast Guard has, year after year since the eighties, had to do
more with less, and because they’re so good at it has had even MORE money taken away ! It’s time we let the Coast Guard have MORE ! More people and more money. Everyone seemed so ready to criticize
Admiral Allen when he was unable to fix a problem that, because people and funding have been taken
away from the service, he was unable to fix ! PLEASE, EASE UP ON THE COAST GUARD !!!

Not sure what you’re having a hard time comprehending about “they do what those foreign navies do, which is more like what our Coast Guard does”?

From the veiwpoint of a retired Coastie, The Coast Guard actually uses all of its resources every day. Personally I had the pleasure of serving on a ship that was still put together by rivits. It was built in 1939 for the light house service, they retired it in 1993. It was replaced by a ship built in the 1950’s. We coasties protect and directly serve the people of the United States every day. We dont lay dormant between foreign conflicts. We are consantly in the thick of things wheteher is saving Dad mom and the kids caught out in a sudden storm, keeping a eye on the fishery industry, illegal immigrant interdiction, catching drug smugglers. Or helping the Navy board enemy ships. All that and we ‚still have fewer people than the New York City Police Dept. Give up the ships they’ll be used, and used well.

Hello all Coasties and Sailors, I have been in for 20 years and I have never seen a more sorry excuse for an administration. Where is Joe Biden?I have seen more of Bill Clinton attempting to help this country that AI have of our VP.Its really a daunitng task when you realize that the US Coast Guard is the OLDEST seagoing service!

We have 21 rates and have always do more with less. For instance, we wanted to get into the thick of everything immediatley with the deep Water horizon spill BUT the President felt otherwise. Apparently the Army Corp of Engineers has been tasked with a long term enviromental impact study to help determine cause and effect and lessons learned. Just another set back for the Coast Guard. The Coast Guard received 2.1 million applications for employment from a year ago and hired approximatley 2200 new hires. they are a member of the Department of Homeland Security as opposed to the Navy which is DOD. The people of america have spoken, please let them have the tools necessary to conduct Search and rescue and take care of our HOMELAND! Thank you all Coasties and GUARDIANS

What the heck is going on? It’s been quite a day.…. first I get an email describing how the powers that be are scaling back raises so that people who don’t want to work can have free money. Then I get another email explaining how the White House is punishing not just the Coast Guard, but all services even further by cutting BAH rates by roughly 2–300 bucks depending on where you are.… now this?

It’s becoming clear that this administration is looking to open us up to a whole host of problems.

The Coast Guard is the only service branch with Federal law enforcement powers. The CG goes out on US Navy ships and foreign navy ships to inforce both domestic laws and international laws at sea.

How does the saying go??? We’re asked to do more and more with less and less. Soon, we’ll be asked to do everything with nothing.

Well said! I have been in 18 years and agree with you 100%, this administration is an enemy to what we did each and everyday. Thanks for your service! Semper Paratus

As a sailor i can state that most of the missions carried out by 270 and above sized cutters are not always mentioned. Yes we do run our smaller classed vessels ragged but most of the critical missions that are done are out of range of the average patrol boat. The smaller the vessel the more chances of failure out there when battling some of those heavy seas which in most cases we are battling. I do like the idea of patrol boats but I remember that we were very far out there in the pacific once and our helo had to land on 2 vessels before getting someone who needed critical attention. This was all possible since all those vessels were large cutters. I believe that the American priority in taking care of its military has gone on the wayside and the now with no oversight on past pet projects there is a misguided notion that pulling money away from needed projects is the solution to repairing the void that is now left behind.

WHY DON’T THEY CUT OBAMA’S SALARY, THAT MIGHT HELP.

What the CG should do is some police departments do Any money they seize through drugs they keep for the dept.

The CG operates in US Coastal Waters and those contiguous with or supporting US Assets. Additionally 14 USC 89 indicates that the CG must train with and for integration with the US Navy in times of war and thus have knowledge and compatible capabilities so as to easily and seamlessly integrate should the need arise. A small percentage of CG, mostly Reserve handle this duty and keep law appropriately applied. The CG was part of vietnam, Dessert Storm, and currently serves in Iraqi Freedom Guarding seaward assets of the Navy, Maritime supply shipping, and the Oil Platforms as well as the three Harbors of Kuwait and Um Qsar, Iraq.

Coastie here.. we are already loosing three cutters this year; they were loaned to us by the Navy and the contract is up. We are also seeing a cut in personnel, while outside of my cutter’s window we watch Northrop Grumman pouring out mor Navy ships. Wish we had thier budget. The 270 and 210 is long past tier life expantancy dates. Along with the 370’s and soon the 110’s. pretty soon we will have torely on 87 footers on down

The CG takes a low profile, spending its money of keeping old ships running instead of media hype like its sister Services. It is the best monitary deal the Taxpayers have actually returning revenue in fees, fines, and confescated items while providing homeland and foriegn security duties. The OMB is looking for savings to offset tax cuts. The CG will not complain because there is no voice from which to complain. There is no visible presence at the joint chiefs, there is no secretary of the CG, but rather the secretary of Homeland Security whose focus is multiple agencies. The CG is mostly ignored, until is shows its real colors as in the BP spill or during Katrina. When agencies and politicians were arguing, the CG was doing. As the oldest continuous Naval Service in the US, it just works; and leaves the grandstanding to the Navy!

husband has been in for 8 years, he’s never been on a ship that was younger than 42 years old. there are only so many times you can rip out and replace a system before things really fall apart. its like going to the dentist, he can only put so many fillings in a tooth before there is nothing left!

This is a real crisis for the Coast Guard.
The National security cutter costs way too much and there are too few of them included within the Coast Guard’s budget to get any quantity discount. The Offshore Patrol Cutter (OPC) is misnamed. It sounds like a mega-patrol boat. It is actually a right-sized national security cutter. Why shouldn’t OMB reject
OPC until the CG can properly articulate its current force integration into the new Coast Guard. They lost the ability to rationalize it as an integrated part of a much larger Deepwater system when Deepwater collapsed and every ship now has to stand on its own justification. Meanwhile the legacy fleet that does their job each and every day falls on hard times because of chronic maintenance problems and inability for Deepwater to deliver the new goods. The Coast Guard needs to quickly resize their fleet aspirations and try in every possible way to leverage UAV’s, other sensor systems and satellite technology to extend the capabilities of their ships to allow smaller ships to do larger ship missions rather than the other way around.

Looks like the red-headed step-child gets it again.

alot has to do with sea state and weather conditions. smaller cutters like the 87 footer can only handle 8′ seas. When our ship rescued Nick Schyler off of Tampa, we were in 15 footers (in the Gulf of Mexico) for 8–10 hours just to get near the scene.

I was in the Coast Guard in the early seventies and there was a scary time during the Vietnam War when we as a country went on condition 2 and all leave and libertys were cancelled and the 405 foot (steam ship) USCG Cutter Botwell was going to take us there. Glad it didn’t go through as we would of been sitting ducks.
Give our boys and girls the equiptment to protect us and themselves.

This is ridiculous. That is all there is to say about it.

Looks like Charlie Golf is going back to the days of “We’ve done so much with so little for so long, that we’re now qualified to do everything with nothing.…” After 9/11, the Coast Guard was sitting pretty high but now, given the choice of providing quality replacements for aging classes of cutters or continuing the federal entitlement programs for those that do nothing, it looks like the CG will end up on the short end of the stick. Sorry to see things revert back to the way they were.….Retired Coastie (And **** proud of it!)

Its already been said but it would be impossible to do that mission in a 50 to 100 foot boat. I spent 2 years on a WPB 95 footer (in the old guard) around the Cape Hatteras area, can’t imagine would it would be like 500 miles at sea. Three quarters of the crew would lose 1/3rd of their body weight…

Its time the powers that be recognize that Coasties have their limits also.

Easy solution…eliminate all welfare and section eight housing, immediately. Anyone that wants to make babies…get a job! This will free up the billions of dollars we need to defend our nation, bringing our forces back to a modern, operational state. Or we can just go broke with our internal/excessive hand out programs and wait for the day we all have to learn cantonese and trade our dogs in for Pandas.

“What can it do that more smaller patrol boats can’t?“
1. Embark a helo and aviation detachment to greatly extend its search and interdiction range
2. Patrol for greater than a week or two at a time
3. Rescue 100+ migrants at a time from dangerously unseaworthy yolas
4. Endure seas greater than 20 feet while without damage to the hull
5. Support smaller cutters during extended ops.
6. Etc.

More of smaller vessels does not meet the mission demands of our Coast Guard. If it did, we’d just small boats (40–50′) by the hundreds.

The CG had a number of ex navy sea plane tenders. The 311s. I was in 66–70 on the Ingham best sea going class ever built. We went to Viet Nam with mostly WW2 equment It was disgusting to me at the time. They replaced the 40s with 2 mortars. Think about that for a while. We were in the Delta area and ran aground once but were able to get off. That’s when we found out there were only enough small arms for half the ships company. When we got back to the Phillipines we all went out and bought our own. When we needed scuba equp. we had to use our own personal gear. In the 80’s they overhauled the ship, it took a year then they promptly retired her. ,

The Nation ALWAYS gets its moneys worth, and much, much more, with the Coast Guard. Money put in the Coast Guard has never been a waste. The 180′ icebreaking buoy tender I reported aboard in 75′ was already 30 years old. Nobody thought much of it. Our steering system, our small boat and davits, were very much WWII. Much of our cold weather gear came from the nearby USAF base in Duluth, MN, when they threw their old winter gear out. Don’t cut from the Coast Guard! There has never been anything to cut!

Alternative #2: turn over all deepwater missions to the U. S. Navy with their modern fleet, and deploy 9 man LEDET’s onboard these vessels, making them “insta-cutters.”. Old concept with already proven results.

I only pulled one OS, Delta in ’72 aboard the 378 Munro (WHEC-724), they shut the OS stations down in ’74, i think.

Trust me, the 210′ fleet needs to be turned into artificial reefs. And I’m on the Viggy-piggy (WMEC 627) which is one of the youngest in the 210′ fleet. We went through another mid-life overhaul less than 3 years ago and its a matter of time before she kicks the bucket. In the past 6 months we’ve had 3 mainspace fires that were only resolved quickly due to expert watch standing. Some of the hull steel is at 50%. Its sad that it will probably take a major tragedy before the suits in DC realize how serious a problem this really is.

here we go again! I was in the cg in 1961 and it was always what is the next cut? It is nevy what Guard does it what we can cut. Oh Well!

I retired in 2001 it is now going on 2011, High endurance and mediums are still in use? 30 yrs here alone, and when I was in the fleet, it was “Real” old. It will take a 378 or a 210 cracking in half and its well trained crew going to Davey Jones’ locker, before the CG will get a new fleet! What a shame, Our congress knows not what they do.

A vessel any smaller than 200 feet wouldn’t satisfy the complete mission requirement of the current MEC fleet. They need to have specific tow capabilities and sea state capabilities that smaller vessels cannot meet. For instance, cutters under 200 ft in length cannot sustain hurricane sea states and tow distressed vessels populating a portion of the modern fishing fleet. Just the opinion of a cutterman (requires more than 5 years at sea) who has spent the majority of the past 12 years at sea on MECs. Not to mention, the MECs are excellent platforms for large migrant operations due to the size of the usable weather decks and the ability to remain at sea for much longer than smaller vessels. It takes a significant amount of vessel to store a significant amount of fuel.

Bad time to cut from the hardest working unit in the US. We are not given what we should. The Coasties work harder then most but not given the credit it should. Nov they want to take uor ships, BAD MOVE!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Might as well haul Constitution out under sail, she is a solid frigate to this day. Give the CG what is right, a sh*t load of high tesile strenght steel hull, 95–102 foot, twin turbine and 900hp cruesing deisel powered fast cutters, with bow and stern mounted 30mm auto cannon (or whatever we now got) six M2 50’s,and the best surface radar, then let them guard the god dam coast! Let the Navy patrol the blue water, we have enough to do as it is.

I agree that the Coast Guard could take a lesson from the brother services and look at the potential of an already-proven platform, but the CG has increasingly had to perform broad missions since 9/11 that haven’t kept pace with the technology to help the service. I was an enlisted ‘engineer’ on one of the 270’s mentioned, and the whole crew marveled at the ability of each of us to keep it performing its’ mission. To be blunt, the ship I served on was a piece of crap to begin with. The original design of almost 400 feet; but over 100 feet were chopped off from the original design due to budget constraints at the time. Yet, the ordinance and electronics packages were left in tact. Guess where they went? They got piled on top of the shorter version that came out. Can you imagine what it’s like to ride a piece of cork?

This is true I spent 1981–2001 in the CG and yr after yr our budget was cut, at 10.5bil now, it must be bear bones service , i even read that the 378fleet is dock due to the hulls are unsafe even after a 12month yard.
Congress is to blame. But hey lets spend another 20bil on illegals, Watch out Navy, you guys are going to 250ships by 2020. The Navy should be fighting for the CG during time of War we transfer to them, Oh well I guess we wont go, we wont have any ships to bolster the navy fleets.

I served on 2 Reliance Class Cutters (210′), the Valiant and Dependable, and was temporarily assigned to a 180′ Buoy Tenders (USCGC Hornbeam), a 378′ Cutter (USCGC Dallas) and another 210′ Cutter (USCGC Vigorous). These are the workhorses of the Coast Guard fleet and they are aging, the 210’s that I served on were launched in the late 60’s. The problem is that no one really pays attention to what the Coast Guard does until they are needed. This is the only service that gives more back to the American people than it spends. The amount of lives and property that are saved are hard to put a price on. The men and women of the Coast Guard do so much more with so little that it’s about time they got something new.

To those armchair admirals out there — stand a watch or shut up. Semper Paratus

Just to remind some people out there, Coasties came before the navy.
ck your history. We don’t need uised ships from the navy, we need new ones. We deserve​.it!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

The Coast Guard actually save the U.S. Millions of dollars every year from smugglers, drug runners, saving lives and protecting assets of americans

The reason that the Coast Guard does this training and not the Navy is two-fold. First, the Coast Guard is the best at what they do — WORLDWIDE! They aren’t told to go train, they are invited by those countries. Second, because the Coast Guard is not DoD what they do cannot be considered an act of aggression by a foreign country (except Cuba). It’s the same reason that, aside from the coast of Somalia, Navy boarding teams are lead by Coast Guard officers. If the US Navy boards a vessel it is considered an act of war because they are a combat service. I know this because I served with them.

Glad to see nothing has changed since I retired 10 years ago. They have been doing so much with so little for so long that soon they can do everything with nothing.…. Never more true.…

At the end of WWII the Coast Guard received abbout 11 US Navy (tug type) ships. Those ships, one of which was the Tamaroa (WMEC-166), was kept in service for 50 years after the war. For the next 50 years the Coast Guard had to beg, borrow or steal parts to keep those ships operational. The answer is to NOT give the Coast Guard the mothballed ships of the Navy fleet unless full maintenance and a full crew are part of the package. Been there, done that.

What do you expect for a bunch of self centered idiots like we have in that dung heap they call Washington? As long as they get their wonderfully exorbitant salaries and raises at the end of the year; it’s all they care about. OOPS forgot to mention all their pet projects that they sponsor.
My mother can’t even get a Cost of Living Raise on her Social Security but they make millions.
We risk our lives every time we go out and it makes no never mind to them unless it happens to be someone important to them.
Sorry to be bitter but it’s just my opinion. Maybe I shouldn’t have commented; we belonged to DOT when I served from 88–92. I will apologize in advance if I’ve offended anyone.

To back up the Navy the Coast Guard needs 75–100 ships with the same endurance, and speed to keep up with them, The Navy no longer wants to go out with them because CG ships are the slowest in the fleet, and fleet speed is as fast as the slowest ship, just before i retired the Navy turn down CG request for joint training , Stating that our ships didn’t make the grade any longer. New 400footers and 280s with navy spec engine rooms and bridges and c and c would be whats needed rt now.

great. another giant step backwards by a nearsighted (perhaps blind?) government agency. cutting the Coast Guard’s resources while adding even more responsibility.

Thank you for adding to the Coast Guard body count. If we, stupidly, use your plan the better funded drug cartels will use ground to air missiles to retaliate. Coast Guard pilots are NOT combat pilots, they are experts at search and rescue. They are trained to fly through the worse crap mother nature can throw at them, pluck survivors from the water, and return safely. Your asinine plan would kill all that skill and training.

THAT, Gunny, would not be politically correct ;-)

This is a Congress decision not an Obama decision. No president micro-manages to that extent.

Having personally served on Coast Guard 95 and 82 foot patrol boats.…100 feet is not adequate to perform all missions. I suggest you ride at 210 foot cutter in the Bearing Sea.…you’d change your tune

I agree. Our service men could sure use some of that money for new and or better equipment.
I also agree that people that never served or is a spouse of a service person should NEVER offer an idea of what they should do or what kind of help they get.

The CG ships are put through the same testing as the Navy as it’s done by the Navy.

The war in Irag cost $177 million each day. No game plan, no results. So the one service that in war and peace, trains and provides services like saving lives, protecting our coasts, our environment, making some of the largest drug busts in us history,…all while facilitating commerce, keeping port cities safe and serves this nation, our public,… AND WE CAN’T INVEST IN THEM? Stop the war 3 f@#k%#* days early.

We all know how we can save. How about cutting some waste in TSA and redirect those funds to a more senseable approach to protecting our great country. As a retired coastie I have seen on many ocassions where we were made the escape coat when there were budget short falls. We have done this to many times in this country and now it has affected our cities, schools and the economy. Where will it end? When will we start making good sound decisions for the betterment of WE THE PEOPLE?

I was also attached to the CGC ACUSHNET 10 years ago. She should have been decomm’d then when she was 56. Now she’s the queen of the fleet at the ripe old age of 66 patrolling the Bering Sea. She may be slated for decommissioning within the next 5 years be realistically what will fill that operational gap. The WHECs aren’t in any better shape and not much else can withstand the furious weather up there.

I agree, we have issues, BUT… In the future, please keep those types of details (time underway, drydock, availability, etc) close to the vest. We do not need to broadcast info such as this in such a public forum.
Another Coastie

Please forgive me if what I’m about to say doesn’t sound articulate enough. I’ve been in the CG for 17 years now. I’ve been on joint ops with foreign services. I’ve been apart of a team that trained other counties’ Coast Guard on search and rescue, and interdiction ops. I’ve been in the bearing sea doing fisheries, working the maritime boundary line for other countries taking away from our fishermen, conducting search and rescue cases in the dead of winter when a fisherman had a heart attack or lost a appendage and needed to be flown off. I’ve been off the coast of Japan working with the Japanese to search for illegal high seas drift netters. I’ve even had to conduct search and rescue ops for the Navy when their own crew members jumped overboard, and they didn’t even notice it until a day or so after it happened. I’ve spent most of each year away from home either at sea, or training elsewhere. I’ve willingly stood duty on holidays so others would not have to. All of which I’ve done as part of a team. With people that I am proud to call shipmates, brothers, sisters.

Asset wise we definitely need the right ships to cover long range, mid range, and coastal. It pains me to see ships that I started out on falling apart due to age, long term abuse in heavy seas, long patrols, and relentless budget cuts.

As for the budget? I personally on a daily basis put money out of my own pocket to ensure that my own shop the current ship that I serve on can still function and complete it’s mission. At present we’re on a continued resolution and we’re only approving funds for mission critical items. Which leaves a lot of items to the way side. Items that my shop can not function without. So please explain to me how taking more from us and then complaining about what ships will be right for the task at hand is helping us at all? If you are a shipbuilder and you think you can solve this countries problems by complaining about what we need or don’t need feel free to apply for the job and solve the problem. Otherwise please send me your address so I can send you a bill. Maybe you can recoup me the several thousand that I have personally put into this unit and others over the past several years due to the service being keel hauled in Congress and the public eye resulting in this service being short changed each year. I love this service and this country and I will continue to serve until my time is done.

Respectfully,
Chris

Their are a lot of retired sailors and active duty commenting on this issue. I can only offer a present look of how things are. As a sailor we are working hard, still standing duty and still issuing in new coasties. But, something has to give, I spend 16 –20 hrs a day staring at email, drilling for situations, puking over the side, sweating about how the next port call is going to come together with no internet and 1960 ‘s equipment. The fleet in question is inefficient and causing logistical pains in funding and parts. The mission is too broad for our size and at times seems unclear. We need a leader in D.C. who truly sees the ground level, goes on a patrol and is willing to take charge and punch through the red tape and makes changes. But I guess that’s doubtful in politics. On this comment I am holding back a lot, its actually makes me sad.

Maybe if they bring back beards and shots of brandy after watch instead of us dressed up for looks instead of substance I might feel better about it. Sure we have the latest sunglasses, crisp uniforms, clean shaven, but what about that white pig we are riding on.

Personally i like the idea of something like an LSD being the mother ship for 4 or 5 of the 120 patrol gun boats like were used in ‘Nam. the PG were capable of over 45 knots and required 6 foot of draft. They also had dual engines, jet and desal so the had range and speed (good for drug intradiction and SAR) and a 3″ main battery with a fire rate of 10 to 15 rounds/min. for teeth. but nobody likes my ideas anyway.

I can only agree one hundred percent with you. I served in two WWII 180′ buoy tenders in the mid 1960’s to early 1970’s, Mallow WLB-396 and Sorrell WLB-296. We were all over the Pacific in Mallow and in some real nasty situations in the Gulf of Alaska in Sorrel. They were stout ships but they were already getting old and were finally retired over thirty years later.

The CG’s mission is much more than just running out of sand peep stations along the coast (although that is also very important). It’s obvious that probably 75% of the writers have never been to sea or they wouldn’t be spewing the stupidity I’ve been reading here. Especially the stuff about spending weeks at sea in glorified yachts.

The Guard does more good in a week than the rest of the damn govt does all year and yet they get little recognition and just like it was years ago, they are begging for money and usually end up scavenging in the Navy scrap yards. Take from one who has been there.

A lot of good comments. When I see the 270’s start to go I realize how old I am. Was in HQ when we layed out PA and TTY systems.

Wasn’t a bad ship back in 71, must be getting prety stressed by now though.

Nice OPSEC scolding above, but I haven’t seen anything that would comprise CG lives, property, or our mission.

I remember back a few years ago (1975 or so) the coast guard was accepting all sorts of new missions. It never dawned on anyone that each mission used up available resources. Bottem line, they had to curtail harbor patrols for lack of fule. make of it what you will.

Still, we had fewer then the NYPD back in ’75, and still did a good job on most of the tasks we had, including Oceanographic research.

Fellow Coastie here with 8 years in. If these cutters are going to be put on the chopping block, find some things to replace 378 and 270ft cutters STAT!!! Everything but the MH-65, C-130J, and new CASA are outdated from an aeronautical stand point. Sorry guys I am in aviation but hearing people talking about putting something smaller than 300ft in the Bering Sea is just plain dumb. I have flown over 700ft freighters getting thrown around like there is no tomorrow. But the truth of the matter is when weather hits, the navy goes around it. The CG will sail and fly into it to do what is needed to get the job done. Period and we are willing to do so.

When I came in I was on the USCGC Sledge which was commissioned back in 1964. For the layman, that boat has be in service before any Ford Mustang even hit the road. Let alone any of the medium to long range cutters that are in service. I could go off on rants on more but it would all ********* the same thing. Either increase the budget or decrease the CGs mission responsability so we can afford a replacement.
Semper P
AE+AT=AVT=AET

I sailed on three of the HECs covering 18 years and I was amazed at the deterioration over that time. Each of those cutters easily exceeded their intended underway cycle, a fact that left little time for serious overhauls. On the Mellon I was underway 293 days my first year and 292 days the second. On my last cutter, the Boutwell, we deployed to the Persian Gulf for six months, then were back underway within two months on a drug patrol. We are using them up. We need the new cutters, period. The Coast Guard can’t rely on the oldest fleet in the world any longer.

Do you realize that the CG has missions assigned to it by law. Read US code to find all of the required missions. The OMB cutter was to replace the 378’s and 270s which could not meet any of our war time responsibilities. The spare parts for the 378’s are do to run out this year and they are already beyond their life expectancy. The Coast Guard is responcible for patroling our economic zone which is out to the 200 mile mark and for protecting US shipping lanes as well as escorting convoys in time of war. I would like to see how well you do on a vessel smaller than a 378 in Alaskan waters in winter.

they are using an LCS Design for these and the already built 420 national security cutters.

You are wrong the 270’cutter is already on its last years they were not meant to last more than 20 years and are really to slow to meet most mission requirements. You can thank Congress for the 270, it was supposed to be about 311feet long before they cut the budget and shortened it.

The CG is in the black sea because the Navy requested us.

They also patrol our living marine resources (fisheries patrol), maintain our aids to navigation (bouys, light houses, coastal aids to navigation, etc.), ice break operations, marine environmental protection, teach and enforce marine safety practices, and regulate ship building and standards of construction for commercial and private vessels. They are probably the most overlooked yet viable service we have!

They tried that but the Epoxy paint turned out to be hazardous to sea life. The new formula just doesnt hold up the same.

The cutters they currently use are past their useful life. Do more with less. It will eventually catch up.

My cutter was commisioned in 1944 and we are still going. The boats will hold out.

When I first joined the CG the moto was you have to go out but you don’t have to come home. we did the mission the best we could with out spare parts. Quiet often we had to make them but they took the machine shop off the 378’s and stopped teaching the MK’s how to mill things. All the CG ships are failing and over do for replacement. Just think we patrol in 25–35 foot seas and are required to enforce the US economic zone which is out to 200miles off our coast. The CG is still smaller than the New York City police force.

I doubt that this job would fall to the Navy, they are not known for diplomacy and cannot enforce law. The Coast guard already has the Navy contract for ice breaking and we will be required to place buoys in US part of the inland waters. The CG also has the job of tracking all ice flows in commercial waters. The navy has already shut down all its Alaskan bases. The navy already patroles the are with Subs and I doubt that they will do anthing else other than that.

The CG has already turned down naval vessels and does not need the added missions that happen when we take naval ships. Just remember the Navy cannot do law enforcement except when marshal law is declared. More being built does not lower the price. This has been looked into and thrown out.

Retired Coastie here. I can tell you now that our WMECs are in dire need of replacement, especially the 210s. They won’t hold out. The only real reason why they’re even afloat is because our awesome deck force personnel and engineers. Their hull maintenance and PMS have saved them from popping the cork and going under, and that’s a fact(well, with a little help from the yards). If anything, they need to properly modernize our existing MECs. I mean REALLY modernize them. The problem is, it’s cheaper to build a new cutter than it is to modernize.

Semper Paratus

Oh..
MK is the only way! :P

Noo tell me that is not so.

Please tell me that is not so.

They’ll last until we have another Blackthorn type incident and a lot of good Coasties get killed. No one in DC cares (if most inside the beltway even know) of the CG missions, how we run out into the hurricane (to get some poor sole on a sail boat who should have known better) when everone else is headed inland.
No one will pay attention until a tragedy strikes. Russion roulete with 30+year old boats is a losing game, only question left is who will be the first loser.

Especially since they are starting to rotate them to be underway CONSTATLY with alpha and beta crews. I have an idea! Lets cut the army, navy, and airforce budgets with the same percentage per capita we cut the coast guard! My husband is a coastie and I’m JUST WAITING for federal gov’t to hand them ORANGE duct tape.… and rejected walmart arm floaties and tell them to do what they can there isn’t enough in the budget!

*bravo

Been retired since ’97, but spent over 10 years on 210’s and 378’s in my 31 years, as well as 5 in shipyards and another 3 at the Yard. The service needs cutters large enough and stable enough to keep the flight deck from being buried in green water and enough amenities to survive 35 day patrols at a minimum. Yes, smaller PB’s can do much of the work inshore, but only a desk jockey would make comments about not needing deep water ships and replacing them with 80–100 footers. The problem that the Coast Guard has now can be traced back to something I call the “red-haired step-child” syndrome. We are a service really without a Departmental home and have been that way for decades.

They said my comment was too long and to split it. Here is the rest:

Whether we were an outcast when we were with Treasury (when I first came in), or when we were pirated into Transportation (the sole purpose of which was to transfer enough people into Transportation so that it could be a Cabinet-level post in the government), or when a similar high-jack took place when we got trasnfered into Homeland Security (AtoN and Fisheries are high priorities with them) … the result has always been the same. We get screwed money wise, because the holders of the pursestrings (the highest of the civil servants that I call GS-97’s) are beholding to the meat of the organization … in this case, Customs, DEA, and Terrorism.

They said it was still too long… the saga continues:

The Coast Guard has never been the meat of any organization or Department … we have been the “orphan” who always turned up a hero to make the Department look good. Similar to when we were second-class citizens to the Planes, Trains and Highways in DOT, we are in a likewise situation here. Just like when the funding-faucet opened due to the post-Katrina attaboys, the opportunity is there right now to strike because of the BP catastrophy. We need a Commandant that has the gumption to say “if you are funding xxx dollars and we need xxx dollars plus 15%, then I will cut out xx mission and someone else can do it.”

My heavens, they really don’t alow much space .. it continues:

In this case, it would be Gulf and offshore oil-rig responsibilites that another Department would have to pony-up and be responsible for hands-on. It could be DOE, it could be Interior .. it makes no difference because the newly assigned custodian wouldn’t be able to do it. This isn’t about the Obama Administration or the Bush Adminstration or donkeys or elephants .. it’s about who controls the money in any of the government stovepipes. I would imagine that the Commandant is not even in the top 15 people who wield the real power and money in HS. What has happened in the past has been a good indicator of what will happen in the future. In this case, the Coast Guard will continue to suck wind and be simultaneously overmissioned and underfunded.

The CG does build to the same standards as the USN for larger cutters as they have to be able to assume missions that could be handed to either the CG or USN. Plus the deck weapons are USN items.

How much money did Obama give the Palestinians? A hundred million? Two hundred million? And you wonder where the money goes!

That’s because it is so old and broke down it is unsafe to get underway on. The WHECs have holes in the hulls, engines and reduction gears that are worn out and unsupportable equipment throughout. The CG has always been forced to operate assetts years beyond the actual life expectancy. You should be concerned for your sons safety if they do have to get underway! Our politicians know nothing about “Good Engineering Practices” or just plain common sense decision making. It’s all about constituents and home state special interests.

This is typical Obama.… Continue to pour money to BS projects all the country and more importantly in other countries… At the same time he is going to cut spending on one of the hardest working groups of people in the country. The CG is doing missions all over the world, and some of our boats are 20–30 years old. The WMEC Class has basically doubled their life expectancy.

Obama needs to cut the crap and get with the program.

200 million is not even half the waitress tip on what the Coast Guard needs for upgrades. Also the present Administration didn’t “give” Palestine anything … disbursements are meted out through Congressional and Senatorial approvals and political infightings, almost always going back to commitments made years before via treaty or other “tit-for-tat” workings… in this case the previous administrations. If you want to keep blaming Obama for all existing problems on the planet, I would suggest that you wean yourself off Fox News and open your eyes to a bigger picture of the world.

Thats a prototype picture if you payed attention to the begining of the article there is one with the windows all around it. It is the same way car manufactures put out there new and improved cars. Also to the people saying why not cut back on the size. I guess you have never been in 50 — 60 foot seas doing patrols on the open ocean. If you were in a 50 footer then you would be destroyed. Thats why they make them bigger.

As an enlisted man for 18 years, and former tech support on a system that is on almost every cutter in the fleet, I have personally been on just about every one of these ships. They are ALL in poor shape. It’s not for lack of trying.
I am currently assigned to a WMEC. Daily I watch as myself and my shipmates struggel to keep agng equipment running so that we can perform our jobs. I watch literally thousands and thousands of dollars get spent to repair/replace equiment that has far outlived it’s life expectancy. This is not an effective use of taxpayer dollars. Needle guns punch holes in the decks and sides of these ships. How safe is that?
These ships operate in the north Atlantic during the winter, they operate in the Carribean during hurricanes. Our duty is to go out and pull people out of danger when no one else can go. Our lives, and my wife and children depend on the decisions of a bunch of people who sit in the safety of their offices in Washington. We need newer, up to date platforms and equipment. We deserve it, we do the jobs we are asked to do, most of the time without fail. Why don’t WE deserve a slice of the pie too?
How money would you put into a daily driver that just won’t get you to work safely before you replace it??

‚Good morning Chief. The Perry class are good rugged boats, and are workably close to the size needed. The gas turbines, while ideal for “dash” are pretty thirsty. The CG mission, is usually a long patrol at moderate speeds, punctuated by bursts of speed, such as responding to emrgencies, and chasing druggies. Another consideration is that cutters frequently have to maintain position with ships or boats they are assisting, and maintain manueverability at perhaps 2–3 kts. I’m not sure the Perry class can do this.
In wartime however, it’s a whole different ball game. In WWII, the Coast Guard manned 30 US Navy owned DE’s and 75 PF (patrol frigates) also Navy owned. They made do.
Larger patrol cutters generally operate alone, so “time on station” and provisioning capacity are important also.
Merry Christmas and Thank You for Your Service.
BM’s rule!!!
Brian Conway former USCG GM-2

One of the few things the government is actually Constitutionally responsible for and they cut back?
Back in the late 60’s the WW2 era cutters, like the Duane were still doing ocean patrols in the North Atlantic.
Many times they broke down, which extended the patrols of other ships.
Believe me after 35–45 days in the North Atlantic and Baffin Bay in Feb. you do not want to have your patrol extended.
So the new class; Hamilton was introduced.
Now sadly, it’s time for them to go.

Trouble is the men are in deplorable conditions.
The ships hold out but it’s not conducive to good morale or living conditions.

Ex-Coastie replying here. The US Coast Guard is not the oldest seagoing service. It is the oldest
“continual” sea going service. Our brothers in the Navy and the Marines pre-date us by a few years. However, in the period between the end of the Revolution, and the Naval war against France, both were disbanded then later, re-established.

B Conway
ex-USCG GM-2

In 1968 The Hamilton a brand new WHEC was on patrol in the North Atlantic in Feb.
Bravo Station.
A Hurricane force storm ripped her to pieces.
Ladders lost, gun mount dislodged, cracks throughout, She limped back into
Boston and spent the next month and a half in Dry dock being repaired.
That was then.
I’m sure today the Hamilton has many scars and is not operating as a military vessel should.

Drake1, the CG conducts training with foreign navies because most those navies’ duties are more similar to the Coast Guard rather than the force projection duties of the USN. Interdiction, SAR, law enforcement, customs and coastal warfare rather than deep sea operations.

I just recently served 2 years on Diligence. The few improvements on the boat are fallin apart. After being “Restored” in the early 90s. Diligence looks great but is showing her age. Her powerplant now consists of 2 ALCO Diesel Engines, both out dated but well maintained by the engineers on the boat. And the electronics are modern per say. but shes gettin thin around the hull. its her time to retire. 2 month patrols 6 times a year can be hard on a 40 year old ferrari of the sea (joke of course)

Just so we know, Obama’s wife has 24 paid staffers, with a total salary of over 1,000,000.00 per year, not counting benefits. There is room for saving there.

Very little of this stuff matters at the deck plate level. It would be nice to have new gear, and the latest technologies, but Coasties have and always will get the job done with the gear that is available. If one cutter is down, then another is working twice as hard. That is just the reality of it. If all of the Coast Guards cutters and boats go down, you will see coasties manning canoes and sailboats. Whatever is necessary. The Coast Guard will not stand in line at the congressional budget trough and beg. Doing more with less is part of what gives the service it’s great since of pride.

That’s a great idea!!!! Have all the drugs you and your druggie friends want.. Just Tax the drugs… America will become a bunch of cocaine, heroine and meth addicts. Our enemies don’t have to attack us they could just offer us munchies and walk right in.… Not in my country.…. Yes, the High Endurance and Medium Endurance cutters have got to be replaced.
If you want to know the state of “OUR” cutters, climb into the bilge’s of these cutters. You will see, the wasted, deteriorated steel in the painted over problems of those cutters. They spend more time repairing these great old ships then sailing them. It’s passed time to replace these ships. It’s not time to try a 110’ to a 123’ program again. We can do better than that. The Offshore Patrol Cutter is what is needed and the administration should go forward in purchasing them.

the old CG saying will come true one of these days!!! “You have to go out, but you don’t have to come back” That’s what it will unfortunately take to break open the check book for these new cutters. I am a DC and have been repairing these ships for years and have had spots that couldn’t be fixed without major effort. Metal TOO thin to weld on, etc. Help us out and give us some ships. I train for damage , but never want to have to actually do it. As time goes by and these ships get older, i fear i will actually have to perform what my job title is, DAMAGE CONTROL.

Well said, Tom … that is exactly how I felt during my long years in. However, it would be nice to have a sugardaddy in the high reaches of Homeland Security or OMB who actually steps up to the plate and supports the one government entity who pays back in spades, despite the monetary morsels with which we have always existed. We are like the avid golfer who buys a used set of golf clubs every 7–8 years and plays to his heart’s content without bitching about what he has to put up with. It sure would be nice to get a new set of clubs every once in a while, though.

Easy solution from someone who I’m sure never served their country. If you did serve, then SHAME ON YOU! It always amazes me how people want to cut defense but never talk about cutting the real waste such as earmarks and social programs, that although were created with the right intentions, have turned into a open pit. I know 3rd and 4th generations of families that don’t know what work is. All they know if Uncle Sucker pays them every month and takes care of all their other needs.

Primarily because of Politics. When I was active duty, foreign services could receive training from us because we were not viewed the same as DoD, yet we could provide the same training that they were in need of.

As a Frmr. U.S.C.G AD3 Helo SARcrewman I know its about time America wakes up and realizes the duties of the C.G. is way beyond and separate from those of the Navy. Stop treating it like a hated stepchild. They need several classes and size vessels as they must cover various duties over distinct distances. One size fits all is ludicrous !! If you don,t know what you talking about keep your pie hole shut !! I,v been in the belly of the beast on drug patrols and I can tell you 210s are great for close shre support but suck for med. to long range duties. A 300ft + class is needed for multiple duty long deployment details.

The fact is, the Coast Guard will continue to do more with less and always has. It’s core members will rise to the challenge and motivate the younger members to keep on keepin on. The old cutters will be kept on life support at the expense of many tired sailors. I know this first hand. Most have no idea what the Coast Guard does on a daily basis…

The 210’s are pulling 70 day patrols with 60 days inport between. They are covering 10’000 NM + on each patrol. The youngest 210′ (the Alert) is 42 years old! An aging fleet that has been through two midlife’s and is in much need of replacement. An old ship in the Navy being prepared for decom is 20–25 years old…

There seems to be a lot of smoke blowing around, the crews are working their rears off to keeps things running. We all know what opinions are like. Lets don’t change anything just keep chugging along like we have for the last 50 years. Nothing is going to go wrong. If things get too rough lets just throw in the stress card it will be OK. The CEO’s of the big business machines and oil companies need the moneymore than the military. The Congressmen and Senators need the raises along with the kickbacks to keep up their lifestyles up to date. There is no such thing as poverty, men being wounded and dying in service of this country with the wounded not getting any support. Military famlies homes getting forclosed on. As for the Diligence, she had leaky hull syndrome back in the early 80s when I was on her. Gosh she was only 20 years old then. I could go on forever but just direct the comments in the direction of the problem and not in the direction of those folks following orders.

Our cutters are too old and they need to be replaced. They have already deactivated a few of the 378’s because they were so old and damaged. Maybe if our President would cancel a vacation or 2 we could buy a few more boats to help protect this nation. Its pretty rediculous that we are cutting back on national security but paying so much in to things that dont even matter.

I completely agree with you, Michael. Until they start treating the Coast Guard like an active and continued resource, Coasties are going to have to find ways to support themselves w/their subpar equipment. However, what is great about us is that the conditions make us smart, flexible, and inventive. We’ll get the job done whether you give us the right equipment or not. We’re not spoiled like some services, lol.

I spent 25 years in the CG and served on 9 ships (if you count the same one twice). From HEC’s to Buoy Tenders.(The old AVP’s, 210’s, Ancient 125’s, 255’s, and 180′ Tenders). They ALL had bridge wings. I certainly hope these new vessels have bridge wings, if constructed. Try mooring a ship, especially a single screw with no bridge wings, at a crowded pier with others already moored. Only an idiot or landlubber would cliam that unrestricted fore-and aft visibility from the “pier side” of the vessel isn’t necessary. Anyone who has ever moored a ship can attest to the desireability to see the peir during the approach of the ship. And now for this: When I was on active duty, we almost always had to “scrounge” supplies from the Navy and often used worn-out equipment. When the USCG asks for something, it NEEDS it, not desires it, as is often the case with some of the other services. Give them what they NEED to do their job. CDR USCG (ret).

USCG under DOT or any beaurocracy has paid too many already, sonar off the 378 HEC’s. The Challenger was found by the Dallas, so it could have been for JFK Jr. if it was still on board. Now subs are bringing drugs underwater. Get rid of the COAST GUARD. It’s the MOST PRODUCTIVE branch of the service. Maybe it’s time to CLEAN HOUSE IN WASHINGTON!!!!!

The 378 I was on in ’03-’06 was in the Vietnam war. She’s still in service after 42 years. The government has no problem screwing over Coasties. We’re the redheaded step children of the military.

As the Reliance class cutters roll in on their 50th birthday(s), I couldn’t help but reflect on the historical precedent of keeping cuttters in service twice as long as Navy ships (for the most part). “Patch and paint” has been a part of the Coast Guard budget for 200 years. After 9/11 it looked like a sustained upgrading of equipment was coming. Just a pipe dream now, what with the economy in shambles. Hang in there Coasties.

Looks like back to the pre Regan era under Jimmy Carter where men chipping paint on the cutters would chip right through the hull.Aircraft were hand me downs or tag on contracts and we flew HU16E’s that couldn’t land on the water because of keel carrosion..This old Coastie Chief remembers losing people not because of sloppy maintaince but because some equipment was so old it was getting diffacult to get replacement parts.But regardless of equipment,the time tested saying still holds,The regulations state you have to go out,They don’t say nothing about coming back.Semper Paratus.

The 20 years i spent in the CG doing electronics all of it was great, but in repairs on some of are outstanding equipment not having the money for parts half the time and going thru 8 or 9 bad pieces of equipment to make something work was allways the sad part. While I was active we wasted so many HOURs In repairs it wasnt funny. Let us have what we ask for and not some handme downs from other services getting rid of there stuff because the maint and repairs where getting to costly for them .

According to the present military leadership, the Coast Guard doesn’t need more cutters: they need more openly serving GAYS! The service needs to quit wasting money on ships and other mission-oriented programs and invest that money in GAY-friendly agendas! Gotta get with the program, start implementing GAY sensitivity training programs, GAY History month, etc. Pull down the union jack, hoist that rainbow flag. Who needs ships?

PS: This is not my real opinion, but a satirical comment of the current state of political leadership on military affairs.

This is un-fathomable to all of us mariners and anybody who is knowledgeable about the CG’s Mission. In light of the $1 Billion in earmarks in the current tax cut extension bill which OMB is silent on how can anybody with half a brain trade our national secuity for earmarks? You guessed it… only the Bureaucrats in Washington and the Poitical Hacks (in both parties) in Congress.

I spent 24 Years on Active Duty retiring in 1982 in all that time Tkhe US Government always underfunded the USCG. We were still using 1950 40Foot Small Boats into the late 1970. Then as now the CG doestnt getthe money to do the job they just get more jobs. A good examble of this is what is happpening in the North and South in the Ice. Afew yeaars back all money for Ice Breakers was given to (I belive) NOOA and now the CG only has three ICe Breakers of which only Ones is working with out Million O Dollars to be spent prior to using.

I got a question for you all. If you support the Coast Guard so much, have you gone to your congressman about the defiencies in the budget for the Coast Guard. There is only 44,000 men and women in the CG now and soon to be cut to just of 40,000 because of budget cuts. If you want to help the Coasties then fight for them!

I am retired CG and I remember the reasons why I joined in the first place. To serve my country in the best way I can, doing what I loved to do! I chosed the USCG because I was a waterman and grow up on the Chesapeck Bay. I have lived and worked on the water even since I was 10 yrs old. I enjoyed being stationed on the East Coast. I feel I served my country more in the CG than in anyother branch of the service. I did not go overseas and even now I see no need to. Why is the USCG overseas anyway? Isn’t that what the Navy is for? They have much bigger ships and have much more firepower than the CG cutters do. So, I ask, why ar we building bigger cutters and wasting more money? Just build cutters that will replace what we have. They do a great job. Why go bigger?

J.R. Smith,
I am a plankowner on the Diligence after it came out of MAA. We took it to Wilmington,NC. I loved that ship.

I love the Coast Guard this was my family for 20 years and I loved serving.…. I want to make sure this vessel has good lines, good engines, rides good, and serves the mission flawlessly.…Nothing new Congress treats the Coast Guard like step children.… get some money from the NAVY I love my brothers but they have a huge budget.….God Bless the Coast Guard…

You can’t really have an opinion on our duties unless you know what our, the U.S. Coast Guard, duties are. Do you?

Thank you Steve. I think that people forget that without new ships, these old ship delay response to disasters through engine difficulties, etc. The United States Coast Guard is needed and to do our job efficiently and in a timely matter, we need new assets, just like the Marines, Army, Navy, and AirForce. The Coast Guard is often left to fend for itself, while all the other forces are hailed. The Coast Guard is here for the United States people. please remember that folks. You may not be on the open waters, but someone you know or even you yourself will be one day. Wouldn’t you feel more at ease knowing there is a force out there working for you in times of peril? I know I would and do, and not just because I’m a Coastie. You won’t know what affect someone/something has until its no longer there/ you’re in need of them/it.

hence the need for new cutters and assets. Dry dock for that long means engine and ship difficulties. The coast guard needs to be invested in. We want our assets mobile.

Brilliant response. I appreciate your voice.

Once again we are the red headed step child ! The Coast Guard allways get the short end of the deal we will probley get some old Navy ships to replace our dieing fleet. I was on a WMEC that was 50 years old, we spent more money on her than she was worth , we could have built a new ship for the money and labor that went into her. WMEC 6 ESCAPE (Low Rider) three little pigs

What is in the name “US Coast Guard”? Answer: “guarding the US coast”!
Don’t we need that? Here is a quote:
“THE GUARDIAN ETHOS“
I am America’s Maritime Guardian.
I serve the citizens of the United States.
I will protect them.
I will defend them.
I will save them.
I am their Shield.
For them I am Semper Paratus.
I live the Coast Guard core values.
I am a Guardian.
We are the United States Coast Guard.

Let’s start by cutting the way retirement is set up for congress they serve one term and they are eligible for retirement and health care for them and their family. The structure of our elected official need changing. Congress should not be allowed to serve no more the eight years, serving four years at a time, instead of two. Senator serve six years and no more than twelve with no retirement until they reach the age of 65 year old. Our military reservist don’t collect retirement after 20 years of service until the age of 60 why should it be any different for congress,after all we in the military are the ones who are called on to scarifice.

Well, not to beat a dead horse, but I just wanted to post a news article about the condition of the CG fleet…Although nothing compared to some of these good ole salts, I’ve spent one year as a nonrate on a a 210′ and have been in the CG for just over 2 years. I can tell you, nothing has really changed from back when y’all were in. It’s still the same conditions on our cutters. We were moored next to another 210 and the two boats would wager on which we thought would actually make it out on time or not come back early for repairs. It only happened one time that both of the 210s there actually left on time and didn’t come back early to repair something. Once in over a year! But we all know the condition of the assets. That’s nothing new. Has been that way for a long time.

News Article as published in the Navy Times: http://​www​.navytimes​.com/​n​e​w​s​/​2​0​1​0​/​0​2​/​c​o​a​s​t​g​u​a​rd_

And another one on the Haiti reliefe efforts that gives stats on how many CG assets were actually present. Total that with the number of ships in repair trying to get there, and that’s a VERY large percentage of the CG engaged. We are a very small service, around 80,000 Coasties total! http://​familiesandwork​.org/​s​i​t​e​/​n​e​w​s​r​o​o​m​/​w​h​i​t​e​hou

Wow so you are saying the only reason you don’t do Cocaine, Heroine and Meth is because it’s illegal?Personally I don’t do stuff like that because it’s stupid. Do you need a law to protect you from your own stupidity? Given that it’s often easier for a minor to find drugs than it is to get Alcohol I find it hard to believe they would just run out and start doing hard drugs. Given that drugs are more available and cheaper in this country now than they where before the drug war started with Trillions of Dollars spent, I find it hard to believe we have done anything to help any of the issues.

Oh and there is lots of Law Enforcement that agrees with me: http://​www​.leap​.cc/​c​m​s​/​i​n​d​e​x​.​php

nraddin, without getting in an argument about legalizing drugs, which is not what the Coast Guard is about I would make a few comments which might help clarify. (The Coast Guard enforces laws and treaties. We don’t make them.)
1. The TOTAL Coast Guard budget is about $10 Billion. So I am not sure what you are talking about with your $64 Billion number.
2. Legalizing drugs wouldn’t stop our job. The assets we are talking about do a multitude of missions which include counter drug, but also includes search and rescue, and migrant interdiction.
3. Don’t believe everything your read about legalizing drugs. Proponents of it work hard to sway others to their cause. As with Alcohol and Prohibition, once the “cat is out of the proverbial bag” you can’t put it back in.

Your response shows that you are woefully misinformed. The Coast Guard has significantly reduced the Carribean drug traffic by arming helicpters aboard medium and high endurance cutters.

Stupid

I know Coasties are just doing their job and I don’t feel like it’s up to them to change the policy but I do know that part of their budget is used for drug enforcement. I also know that the US spends about $64 billion a year on drug enforcement (Not all of it to the CG obviously). In a time when we are trying our hardest to balance an out of whack budget and debt issue while giving relief to overburdened middle class, anything we spend money on that doesn’t given proven results is a waste of money. No reliable pear reviewed study anywhere has ever come back saying the war on drugs is helping stop or even slow drug use. However it has driven the rise in crime, Cartel Wars in Mexico and huge prison populations in the US, while costing Billions each year.

Here is what the white house will tell you they spend on the drug war. They don’t count in here the cost of prisons, DOD costs, etc. And the numbers are still ~$14,000,000,000.00 for 2009. http://​www​.whitehousedrugpolicy​.gov/​p​u​b​l​i​c​a​t​i​o​ns/

Why should this surprise anyone. Little by little the Obama administration is giving away our country. I expect to hear one day that we don’t need the Coast Guard. Obama probably thinks that each states’ Fish and Wildlife could do the job. Well I have news for him, my grandson could do a better job than he has done and he is only ten years old. Also Congress should take note that with an approval rating of only thirteen percent, don’t get too comfortable with your present job. When Obama’s and Congress’s terms expire lets send them to the Arizona border and let them work as border agents

I was on commissioning crew for a 270 — how can they be phasing those out already? The new class makes sense to get going on it early enough that it won’t become a “buy navy castoffs because ours have rust holes in them and we didn’t get any funding for new ones” Just typical bureaucratic BS where the Guard is concerned

I was serving on the old AVPS. They were derlicts then but keept up weather and ice patrol. Held together with red lead and white paint. Its a crime to let the CG do with less when so much needs to ‚be done. B.A. Jacobson

I am a Coast Guard Veteran and I think that the government should be giving them more money so that they can fulfil thier duties to the fullest. The Government cant reduse the Coast Guard’s Duties because there is no one else willing to or able to do the jobs that the Coast Guard does. The Coast Guard’s ships are at least 40 years old or older, they need newer ships. And they are doing joint training with foreign Navies because the Navies of foreign nations do what our Navy and Coast Guard do combined because they have the ability to do so. So the Coast Guard has to train them and I think that it is awsome. I was involved in the joint training of the Japanese, the Korean, the Russian, the Chinese, the New Zeland and the Austrailian Coast Guard and Navy back in 2006.

Great idea! Should have been done years ago.

Yes but who are we serving by towing the party line of “we can do more with less”? I believe that our Commandant says we also have to be guardians for our brother and sister coasties. How well served at they when one of our aging cutters catastrophically fails at sea? You can write off an entire crew if one breaks up in the bearing.

You are on a cutter, you are gonna feel like you are closed up in a steel box. If you cant handle it dont join the military!!!

My husband is on an 87 out of Portsmouth now and he goes out all the time in more then 8′ seas.

The Coast Guard needs multiple size cutters and patrol boats. My husband was on a 210′ cutter and is now on an 87′ patrol boat, and was at a land unit that ha a 47′ and another smaller boat. THey all are there for multiple reasons and one cannot take the place of another.

Without the Coast Guard the Navy could not do half of what they do.

We the willing
Are doing the impossable
For the ungreatful
We have done so much
With so little
For so long
We are now qualified
To do anything
With nothing

I was a DC on the WHEC Chase 718, ’82 to ’85. Lost a good friend on her due to a main space fire, caused by poor workmanship and short cuts to save money.

How about they stop sending all the U.S money over seas to help other countries that dont want our help, and that will never change and start worring about keeping the men and women of the U.S safe, and give them all they need to do ALL their missions!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Not very much longer, my husband is on a 270′. It is a floating rust bucket. Usually hobbles back into port on 1 engine.…..

What OPSEC scolding?

Because in time of war the Coast Guard falls under the Navy. “Semper Paratus”, always ready!

we’ve been doing that for 30 years now

Look up the age of some of the fleet. The CGC Smilax is still sailing and was built 1942–1944. Thats getting your bang for the buck.

Back in the olden days 1965–1972 most of the fleet averaged 30 yrs old + and x navy painted white with a racing stripe the new stuff that I nevever served on still used old diesel tech heck most ice breakers were repoed form the Russians ‚talk about the short straw. Lets help more illegeal s out first its a bigger voting block >

INSTEAD OF REDUCING THE COAST GUARD BUGET. REDUCE THE UNEMPLOYMENT BENFITS.YOU NEED A JOB THE MILTARY IS ALWAYS HIRING. THERE ARE TO MANY LAZY PEOPLE GETTING PAID FOR DURING NOTHING.THE COASTIES NEED OUR SURPORT FOR THEIR SERVICES.TELL YOUR CONGRESSMEN TO WAKE UP.THESE ARE THE SAME PEOPLE PROTECTING US.THEY ARE BLEEDING AND DYING FOR OUR FREEDOM. WAKE UP!!!!!!!!!

do more,with less or nothing and make it workSEMPER PARATUS says it all, tired old guard bosn mate do you all realize the whole USCG has less peoplethan the NYPD.

This is insanity. Keep strapping the smallest service with more and more missions and responsibilities, while at the same time cutting their resources. Meanwhile, Congress is on the verge of passing a bill with literally thousands of earmarks attached that, I suspect, would more than pay for this class of cutter. It’s insanity.

(Proudly served — USCGC Rush/Station Port Aransas — RM3 — 1975–1979)

I am currently on a 210′. It was commisioned in 1966. The were supposed to last until the late 80’s. No more than 20 years for each cutter. It had it mid-life overhaul back in 1992, and we’re due again for another shortly. The crews do an amazing job keeping them going with nothing, and often having to fabricate their own parts b/c no one makes them anymore. So technically, these cutters shouldn’t be in service to answer your question.

DHS Secretary Janet Napolitano has indicated a number of times that she wants the USCG to merge completely into DHS, one big happy family and loose its identity as a military organization. During the Bush administration the Dems wanted increased security of the ports, scanning of all containers entering the ports and every other thing that they could think of. Now the USCG budget is again reduced, manpower levels cut back and the cutter fleet, some more than 40 years old (the WHEC class) continue to operate. How many Navy ships are that old. Those are scrapped every 20 years or less. Border security is an issue that is not going away and yet this administration wants to nix the resources that are necessary to ensure national security. The quicker Obama and his gang leave, the better.

Scrap the useless MSST’s (they aren’t actually allowed to DO anything anyway)… Or seriously consolidate them… Like the strike teams! Suddenly there will be money for cutters so the CG can actually perform their REAL missions. Msst’s bleed money… They are very expensive window dressing.

the wind class ice breakers wher around for 44 years plus the WLB have been around just as long. you know the coast guard motto SIMPLY FORGOT US.

Given that the Reliance class cutters hull lives are overdue, and the Famous class cutters are nearing the end of their useful service life, just what do the myopic wonder boys of OMB suggest the Coast Guard does to replace them? An NSC is going to cost a lot more than an OPC, and have higher operating costs. Without an OPC, the NSC will have to do the job that an OPC could have done at a signficantly higher outlay of cash. And when they are, what is going to be doing the work of an NSC in the meantime? Someone isn’t putting two and two together correctly at OMB.

Further, the United States Coast Guard is a natural ‘goodwill’ ambassador to many 3rd world countries. While our cutters are superior to their navies, it isn’t by orders of magnitude like the US Navy warships are. A cutter visiting them wouldn’t intimidate them like a naval warship would. And given the Coast Guard’s mission of saving lives at sea, the aura of America’s international benevolence and prestige can easily be enhanced by them. But that can’t happen if all the NSC’s are too busy doing the work that OPCs would have done if we didn’t cut them from the budget.

Hear hear! I was both XO and CO of 378′ WHEC and 210′ WMEC, first when they were less than 6 years old, and later when they were 15 yrs old. The first major rehab of the 210 was before it was 8, and the 378 when it was 18. Operational requirements are not static and change almost as fast the technology needed to support them. All CG cutters are multi-mission capable, manned by mulit-mission traiined people. There is NO BIGGER BANG FOR THE BUCK ANYWHERE IN THE FEDERAL SPHERE OF OPERATIONS, PLUS THE KICKER OF BEING OPERATIONALLY COMPATIBLE WITH OUR NAVY, WHEN AND IF NEEDED. Although the Coast Guard is a military service and fifth member of our Armed Forces, when not under NAVY Control the white Coast Guard Cutters are perceived differently than their gray cousins (USN). That difference in perception allows the CG to be employed internationally at times when the Navy cannot be used from a diplomatic point of view. As an early top official in the CG’s Office of Acquisition, I can assure everyone that enormous energy is devoted to keeping a credible aquisition program. You just don’t turn it on and off at will. Going back to square one is always costly and dangerous to the people who man our platforms. They need and deserve to have the tools necessary for the missions. If you were to try and do the CG waterborne missions with platforms dedicated to single missions, you would increase the investment required for CG missions by a factor of 15 . At some point, it is simply not possible to keep rehabing and modifying an aging platform. It would not be uncommon to require up to 45% of the cost of a replacement on rehabing a ship to last just 5–8 years. I have read this entire blog.….some are out-to-lunch, others factual but incomplete, while others are completely wrong-headed. Please do not forget that Congress approved the last barebones rehabs of these two classes DURING THE TIME THAT THE ACQUISITION PLANNING FOR THE REPLACEMENTS WAS PROCEDING, WITH BOTH DEPARTMENTAL AND CONGRESSIONAL APPROVAL. (Iie. planning, design, contracting cost money and all proceed on the premise that the REHAB will bridge the gap to delivery of the replacement.„„IT IS A WELL-REASONED DELIBERATIVE PROCESS, WHEN INTERRUPTED IT CREATES ABSOLUTE WASTEFUL HAVOC. As a footnote, the CG has repeatedly been asked to evaluate the suitability of off-the-shelf ships built to civilian standards, and, without exception, intellectually rejected them after careful study. If we want our CG to respond safely.. as expected, they need reliable equiipment. When I was sailing, my crews were repeatedly in harms way, boarding for law enforcement, enforcing fishing regulations against foreign vessels in howling winter gales off our northeast coast, responding to 3 oil rig fires in the Gulf, removing crews in danger on sinking ships, towing ship’s stanidng into danger in heavy weather, boarding and seizing contraband loaded ships at sea that were manned by dangerous people, intercepting Cubans and Haitian in over-loaded boars, etc. I know from where I speak. If OMB has passed back the cut of the Offishore Cutter, it is up to the CG and DHS planning people to counter the mark. That may require and offset. However, if OMB’s target is the full life cycle of that new class of cutter, there is an offset.……the savings in retiring the older WMEC and WHECS. I don’t know for sure, but I’ll bet it got into the DHS budget initially because it made financial sense to do so.…smaller crews, smaller annual maintenance, etc. Be happy to hear anyone else’s rebuttal to my dialogue.

This is the same old, same old, Do more with less. The Coast Guard is the forgotten branch of the US Miltary.

I just transferred off of the Hamilton (San Diego). I can tell you that EVERY in port, the MK’s, EM’s and ET’s work tirelessly to rebuild the power plant(s) that were damaged during the previous patrol, only to get underway and have them break down again. The two cutters (the equipment, not the crews) in Charleston are the laughing stock, and it seems could also be the poster children of the fleet. While on board the HamBone, we were the first cutter to conduct a Homeland Security and Sovereignty Patrol in the Artic Circle. The Artic Cirlce. If we had struck even a small ice berg we would have been toast. The CG absolutely NEEDS new platforms to conduct ever expanding missions. But I guess this last set back should be expected from an administration that gives a 1.4% pay raise to someone that has given 13 years to the service/country. I’d like to respectfully send the Commander in Chief a check for $204 (the total increase in crease in pay for next year between pay raise and lowered BAH) and tell him thanks but no thanks. I feel like a server that just got tipped a penny!!

“Duck” is that you?? Boomer should try spending a month or two at sea on one of his 100ftrs!! — I know 295 feet gets pretty small and that’s during good weather!

I just need to correct this statement: During times of war the Coast Guard is the hard nucleus around which the Navy forms”. Spewage yes, but I like the way it sounds.

AD2M.R. GREER USCG VET We used to have an old saying “We went For so long with so little we could go for ever with nothing” When stationed in AirSta SanFran there were a few of us helo sar crewman that started “SARWET” and had to beg, brow, and some even payed for with our on money to start what is now called the rescue swimmer. In the 70’s we were still flying WW2 air craft, HU16E, the HH52a that was made from old parts of the H19 helicopter, i could go on for hours but will stop for now. Simper Parodist.

You need to spend a week or so under way… We the willing have been doing for the unknowing (that’s you)for so long with so little we can now do anythng with nothing. When you are scraping parts from other ships and aircraft because you do not have the money for spares, that is dangerious. It might change when we lose a cutter and Coasties die, will you be happy then… jackass…

The Slimax is STILL in the fleet? Good God

I served on USCGC Harriet Lane in 05 and 06. It underwent it’s Mid-Life Overhaul (crisis) in February of 06 through August 06. While she was a dream after her overhaul, it was apparent that that 22 year old ship isn’t meant to be beaten like the dead horse they treat it as. I don’t honestly believe the Famous Class fleet has much more than 10 years left in them.

Easy soution:
Monthy CRSPs. With enough people kicked out the budget should be good to go for some new cutters. If need be we could sell the CG reserve fleet (currently composited of eight 123s sitting at the Yards) to some lucky country.

But really, once somebody realizes their OER is going to look bad they will figure out a solution ( can you say Deepwater).

because they are training the foreign navies on how to do drug interdiction so your children dont end up on crack. thats why

also being a former coast guard machinery technician that was trained for 270 ft and the 210 ft cutters being one who maintained almost all of them on the east coast the 270 ft cutters have been around since vietnam and the 210 ft ships i believe since world war I since like its time they are upgraded not only that this project has been in the works since before i got out in 2001 it would be a bigger waste of money just to scrap it now.

What WHEC was that? There are 12 and 3 of them have spent quite a large bit of time in port the last year or so. I have 171/2 years of sea time in just over 20 years in the Service. I have never been on a CG Cutter, this includes a WHEC called Hamilton (the first WHEC) in San Diego most recently, that did not spend 190+ days at sea a year. Some ships break, some don’t. Then the mantle of Cutter Neversail or Building Number Whatever passes on to another.

I was serving in Cutter Dallas in NYC and the cab drivers went on strike; all 38000 of them. Was the same number of people, including civilians, in the CG at that time.FA

Ever heard of Jimmy Carter?

Well… now we see the problem with our Congress and our POTUS. Most of the Congress has NO EXPERIENCE in the military, and our president has none. Hell, I have more experience in the federal government (31-years) than he does. So when the bleeding heart lawyers get up there and don’t know what they’re doing when it comes to the military (what the hell was Hillary doing on the Armed Services committee other than trying to bolster her fake position as a supporter of the armed forces, or was she just wooing the industrial military complex she would swear to take down when she became POTUS), what do we expect!? Lets see… maybe we should let our Congress folks fly on 40–50 year old planes when the do their fact finding trips (or fly Nancy’s arse to the west coast for the weekend), or better yet, let Air Force One be the plane Harry Truman flew! Why upgrade AF-1 — just maintain it!!

Maybe Roland would champion such tacks to our “leaders” in DC!!

Roland — I’m not sure what is your experience with the Coast Guard (or any branch of the military) but if you had any clue, you’d never have posted such a comment. If you are/were military, I’d guess Air Force — right?

Unless you’ve worked with the equpment that Coast Guard has had to endure, you don’t understand. Do some research; Find out when the USCGC Taney’s keel was laid (1936), and when she was finally retired (1986). Then show me a USN vessel still on active duty that ever made it past 50-years. Did you know Taney was at Pearl Harbor? She had a sister ship (Bibb) that was around for quite awhile also. I stepped on both ship’s decks and saw the working conditions and where the men had to sleep and eat while enduring heavy seas and long patrols. It was not the cruise ships that we have seen in the Navy.

How old is your car Roland!? Do you still have the first one you ever bought? You’ve been maintaining it — right? Is it your daily vehicle!?

If not — why?

The USCG can do things without them being acts of war that the US Navy cannot

The CG has already leased some of the Navy’s 179’s. The CG doesn’t have the funding to use the Navy’s rrf.

I served on the 327′ Cutter Bibb, WHEC-31 (now an artificial reef) which was built in 1936, from 1973–75. She continued to serve into the early 1980’s, when she was approaching 50 years of age. (My father had helped upgrade her boilers to higher pressure during WWII) While she was old she never missed a patrol (until a wonder-boy XO sank a 5 ton Lighted Buoy by backing down over it after ramming the Navy’s Fuel Pier in Newport, R.I.), yet the much newer (back then) 378′ cutters missed relieving us on what became the last Ocean Station Bravo and the last Ocean Station Hotel due to problems with their CODAG propulsion. Oh, yes, and the bad weather — I survived two hurricanes on Ocean Stations in the Bibb, while the 378′ cutters, built for speed, bounced around like mad in a simple gale!
As for the OMB (whose first OLameA appointed head quit 18 months in out of total frustration), why did they ever approve the Navy’s LCS program in the first place, which has built two totally different types of vessel, and is both way over budget and totally unsuccessful! Instead of the LCS program they simply should have passed the funds to the Coast Guard which is ALREADY tasked with protecting the United States Littoral Frontier!!!! For the price of the first four LCS vessels, none of which is capable of performing their stated mission, the Coast Guard could have built TWELVE National Security Cutters AND the Offshore Cutter program to BOOT!

As a permanent solution, I would proffer breaking the taboo around reducing the size of the Navy. I’m for a strong navy: In fact the strongest, no exception — but we have 11 Carrier battle groups. Our net carrier deckspace is 5 times that of all other carriers in the world combined. If we reduce our force to 8 battlegroups, we would save a budget amount nearly equal to that of the entire US Coast Guard and still have 4 to 1 naval air dominance over the rest of the world — strike capabilities can also be re-bolstered through use of less vulnerable, far less expensive missile subs, if necessary. It costs about about $8.5 billion annually, to operate the entire Coast Guard. That figure is temporarily closer to $11 billion for the proposed 2011 budget in order to accommodate long-offset and much-needed ship acquisitions. A single Carrier battlegroup costs nearly 2 Billion dollars to operate. One carrier costs about $4.5 Billion to build, and, even though they are refueled very infrequently, they cost BILLIONS to refuel — plutonium is pricey.
Strategically, a reduction of total carriers at this time is the best move. The Coast Guard has been, over the last decade especially, far more useful than an extra three carrier battle groups, helping to train foreign nations’ governments in the utilization of their maritime resources, promoting peace, stability in such countries, responding to disasters such as Katrina and the BP gulf oil spill, and disrupting the drug trade that presently devastates our neighbors in latin America. The age of massive fleet-action may well be behind us, and while it is prudent to maintain the world’s strongest navy, Coast Guard’s are growing in importance and influence in the world. Their legal authorities, specialized training and equipment make them indispensable. The US cannot afford to sacrifice any of the interests of its coast guard for the sake of a navy that does not at all need the extra money.

When I was a CG engineer, active duty from 73–77, we patrolled the north Atlantic in an old (built in 1939) navy ocean going tugboat, Cutter Cherokee WMEC 165, and the 2 1/2 years I was on her we rebuilt all 4 main engines once and one of them twice! rebuilt the main boiler, blowers, main reduction gear, 3 generators and many other components that make the ship function. out of the 72 man crew, the engineering department had 44 men just to keep up that piece of junk that we took 50′ waves with and risked our lives daily to chase foreign fishing vessels and ice burgs. If the Coast Guard needs new ships, I say Give them anything they want, they desirve the best equipment that money can buy just like all the other branches of the miltary. OH by the way, guess who calls the Coast Guard when thier ship is running aground and needs rescued in 45′ seas in the north atlantic? The US Navy!! 4–75 look it up! and we did it with that piece of junk ship.

Dude, are you drunk or something? You rambled on (and I read it) for 9 posts!! You obviously have no idea how hard we Coasties work to get the job done that we have been tasked to do. Get over yourself. YOU should try getting on one of these aging cutters in crappy seas and see if YOU like it!! We are Coasties and we get it done.

Boomer, it’s not so much a matter of keeping the ship afloat as it is keeping the crew able to do the job. As has been said in other replies, a 100 foot boat doesn’t do so well in 30 foot seas. Heck, I’ve been on an aircraft carrier in 35 foot seas, and THAT sucker was rockin’ and rollin’. Being on watch for extended periods due to crew sickness and injury, while admirable, is neither safe nor effective. We can’t save lives if we’re all sick and/or injured.

The Coast Guard fleet absolutely needs an up grade.I served 1965 to 1972 once on a 311 ( Dexter) Heavy seas ripped the gun mount off the deck by about 3 to 4 inches and flooded the forward compartment. I and the ship were both born in 1943. After 40 years in the marine buiz Twenty year old vessels are due for a major refit and experience has taught me it is less expensive to build new especially when one looks at a ten year operations actual costs. The Coast Guard Service is actually harder on equipment than the Navy so a comparison is in all probability not realistic. Unfortunatly the NY police Dept. brobably is bigger and has a better budget but do not know for sure.

The boats that they are replacing were built back in the 70’s and 80’s and have gone through retro outfits time and time again. Most of the cutters serve in areas where they are subject to heavy seas time and time again. Not to mention that many of the parts for the engines have to pulled from scrap yards cause the companies no long make the parts. Classis example, take a look at the 41 foot utb it is outfitted with vt-903m Cummins, these engines were placed in tanks during the 70’s and most of these boats were built between 70–75. Lets be honest about it the Navy is always building new ships, as soon as the CG does Congress bi()ches about it. we are the bastard children of DHS and get what is left over in budgeting. Pull your head out of your ass Congress, stop limiting the funds to support the missions. CG has more tasking and less people then CBP but we do their jobs also.

We already have three of their Typhon Class patrol boats, they look nice ride alright, but are no restricted to the dock because of hull plate buckling. The only ship that the CG has gotten from the navy that was worth a damn was the USCGC Storis homeport in Kodiak, AK.

Brian — I understand how any boat will get rocked sea state 3 and up and it would be worse in a 100 foot boat, but while i want the guard to get all the gear and funding they need I want it to be the right gear (just as I’m against a lot of gear the Navy is now getting) The coast guard should be defending our coast and not the rest of the world or ocean trade routes that is the Navys job, The guard shopuld never have to venture more than 100 miles max off shore which would allow them to use smaller craft and more air ****** but at the same time still get larger craft for heavy seas rescue.

Surely agree with one thing. More, and better HITRON aircraft are needed. The H-65’s can’t do what the MH-68’s did when the HITRON’s first established the mission.

It’s a combined Op that’s effictive (air & surface). Placing the burden completely on surface or air is sub-optomized for the threat, and only wastes resources.

Just get rid of all the boats, and keep the aircraft…

I was on Cutter Reliance over 35 years ago when she functioned as the CG’s only both Reserve and OTS training vessel. (She was designated as WTR 615 instead of a WMEC and stationed out of Yorktown Va.)

She was the first one(hence Reliance class) The first 6 months on board was 2 weeks in/2 weeks out. We played war games at GITMO with the majority of the crew being Reserve Coasties.. Several others of her class have already been retired. Seems like any vessel that is getting that old; overhauled several times; worked out on the Atlantic and Gulf of Mexico for that many years should be able to “stand-down” and replaced rather than be designated “oldest boat in the fleet”. Glad that some one above this retired Coastie is having some sense to get new boats. OMB—Go to H–L!! We need the money and the equipment to work with

Why are the newer cutters not nuclear powered? That would save millions of gallons of petroleum supplies and the vessels would not have to worry about their range of operation.

We could keep them floating for 100 more years. As it is, they’re only 50 years out of date now… Drug smugglers, poachers, etc are currently laughing their asses off at the Coast Guard now, and while this “great new” class would only be a few year out of date (because smugglers, etc have boats that can detect Coast Guard cutters hundreds of miles away and outrun them 2 to 5 times, or even submerge and be essentially undetectable), unless Congress wants to give the Coasties some ACTUAL air coverage, they’ll never even catch up, let alone overcome the disadvantage.
OBAMA just plain hates the Coast Guard, and wants to punish them for existing. This program cut (forcing Coasties to use ships designed for WWII-Era standards) is just one more way to hurt them.

And not a damned thing will happen until someone dies (again).

“I’d rather have the cutters and cover the globe, than an overbudgeted strike fighter program (JSF).”

And one that NOBODY wants, at that… To limited for the Air Force, to unreliable for the Navy, and too expensive, unreliable, AND limited for the Marines.

Do they do that in Category 5 Hurricanes? Chasing people who are doing things they already know they shouldn’t be doing? Cleaning up other people’s messes? Going INTO harms way, when everyone else is trying to get OUT of it? And all too often doing so, when there are other people there who really wish they wouldn’t, and doing anything they can to stop those “100 foot ocean crossing boats?” I don’t think so.

I tell you what though, show me a vessel that can actually go out, stay there for up to 06 months, cross the ocean, get shot at, then do ANYTHING other than that (servicing buoys, cleaning up someone’s oil spill, picking up drunken fishermen who strayed off-course and into shoals or worse set their own engine room on fire, or anything else), and I’ll take a good long look. Until then, put up– Or shut up.

More navy hand-me-downs. That’s where the Coast Guard’s trouble actually started; Rather than design vessels to what they really need, Congress was for over 100 years forcing them to take outdated Navy ships, letting them have a few all-new buoy tenders (after the Lighthouse Service was folded into the Coast Guard). The new cutters were faster, longer ranged, better equipped and most of all– NEW HULLS. No more patching over patches on patches, for the first time in over 100 years having a actual new ship that doesn’t need repairs every three days just to not sink… Like the half-dozen cutters raced out to Haiti just after the earthquake there (about half of which ended up needing port-and-starboard, even port-and-report duty, meaning people were literally there for 24 hours, then another 8 to 10, go home for 1 to 16 hours, then come back for 32–34 hours, or even there 24 hours a day, 7 days a week for weeks on end). I can’t remember how many, but a few actually had to be towed in just to get them home.

The problem, JCB, is that the WHEC’s we have are falling apart. You can only dry dock and band aid a ship so many times. One of the cutters out of the west coast of CONSUS had to turn around because her hull just started breaking apart.

Doing it for 30 years and theres no metal left to paint. That maritime-use rust free epoxy junk is just that, junk.

I agree with the idea that our job is underway and not so much at the pier, but.….….….It was my experience in the past that you have a contract with a contractor it usually involves deadlines and penalties. And never, ever broadcast patrol schedules and frequency. You put alot of Coasties at risk.

I reported aboard Cutter Reliance in July 1985. At the time both Reliance & Diligence called CG Sta Port Canaveral Fl home. I can state for a fact the (actually pre) WWII era radio teletype was still in use until Jan 1986. Of course it broke constantly & parts were no longer being made so the Coast Guard scavenged spare parts from all the old teletypes that had been taken off Navy ships.

inlighten these ignorant folks that think they know history , the COASTGUARD has been around a lot longer than the U.S. NAVY , the facts are already in the books ! I MYSELF a former 378’sailor WHEC-715 MAIN-PROP had to suffer the indignities of OUR navy, in training in GITMO ON MORE THAN 1 occasion ‚believe me they don’t like it when they are beat at their own game. those CLOWNS did everything the could to keep my ship from getting THE PASSING (E ) DAMN WITH A CO-ED CREW imagine that sounds like TEAM –WORK we were told in training that the C.G. does not want a ROBOT like the MARINE CORP. but an person that can think and solve problems without needing some talking head in the ward room leading him on . thanks micheal my name also is micheal aka-THE BEAVER FN/MK (THORNAUTICAL42@GMAIL.COM GO-COASTGUARD!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Was the 378 the CGC Rush (WHEC 723) , I was on her in VN in 1971. If so, sad news, she’s scheduled to be decommissioned, along with the Hamilton,Chase, and another 378 within approx 12 mos.

I am a plank owner of the Dallas. I fondly remember when she was state of the art. I would love to know if and when she would be decommissioned

I believe the problem is that few actually pay attention to the name of the service: US Coast Guard. Deepwater assets are costly and a US Navy priority. The USCG does not require deepwater assets to perform international LE missions. Tactical Law Enforcement Teams can do the job riding Navy ships without having to spend the money to actually own a ship of that size. As far back as the days of Prohibition (VERY similar to the failed war on drugs) the USCG owning large vessels (former USN four stackers) was considered a costly mistake. Large vessels are an insatiable manpower and fund sink that the USCG can ill afford.

Refocus and accept that the 21st Century requires a USCG with many 120ft and 47ft patrol boats that can quickly respond to national security and SAR missions along the US coastline and continental shelf. That mission is always enhanced by an efficient aviation component that can provide long range surveillance when cutters are not on scene.

They named it the US Coast Guard and not the USN v2 for a reason.

edit:

“Refocus and accept that the 21st Century requires a USCG with many 120ft, 87ft, and 47ft patrol boats that can quickly respond to national security and SAR missions along the US coastline and continental shelf.

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Who knows Rick. I am a plank owner on the Munro and have been retired for forty years. I think she will out live me.

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