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Naval Warfare

USCG Marine Protector-class

Coast Guard Cutter / Patrol Vessel [ 1999 ]

Marine Protector-class boats provide the modern USCG service with a multi-faceted quick-reaction solution.

Authored By: Staff Writer | Last Edited: 02/10/2023 | Content ©www.MilitaryFactory.com | The following text is exclusive to this site.

The United States Coast Guard (USCG) continues to make use of the 87-foot-long Marine Protector-class cutter in number with some seventy-three hulls completed (of which sixty-seven now remain active, several having been sold to the nation of Uruguay and others or simply retired). These boats are primarily utilized for general coastal-minded patrol purposes but can undertake law / fisheries / border enforcement, drug interdiction, homeland security, and illegal immigration sorties. The hulls were constructed at Bollinger Shipyards at Lockport, Louisiana and entered commissioned service in 1998.

The Marine Protector-class was adopted to succeed an aging fleet of 82-foot Point-class boats in same role, offering enhancements to Blue Water capabilities, crew comfortability, and environmental impact. Onboard is a digital chart display, AN/SPS-73 series surface-search radar, and an enlarged pilothouse / bridge section. The pilothouse takes up a commanding view over the hull superstructure with excellent views all about the craft. Various systems, sensors, and arrays are positioned over the bridge roof line and this includes components set on the lattice-style main mast.

Given an inherent operational range out to 900 nautical miles and a draught of just 5.6 feet, the boats have good "legs" in the littoral zone out to the Blue Water operating environment. Other dimensions of note include a beam of 19.4 feet. Displacement is 102 tons.

Propulsion power is from 2 x MTU marine diesel engines providing the hull with a top waterborne speed of 25 knots in ideal conditions. With onboard provisions stocked and the boat fully-fueled, the vessel can remain at-sea for three days with its typical operating crew of ten (though up to twelve crew can be housed relatively comfortably).

Armament is a modest arrangement of 2 x 12.7mm Browning M2 Heavy Machine Guns (HMGs) to be used in boarding actions, direct-action against belligerent vessels, and general deterrence. The guns are seated on trainable mountings at each "cheek" position along the forecastle - this being in addition to any personal arms carried by the crew.

The boats were acquired by the USCG through an initial 50-strong order in 1999. Deliveries of the first hulls began soon after in 2002 and, from there, additional hulls were ordered to push the Point-class completely out of service. The Marine Protector-class itself is fielded alongside the dimensionally-larger, Blue Water-minded Sentinel-class cutters of the USCG which shares some of the same mission set.

Beyond the USCG and Uruguay, the boat is utilized by forces in Lebanon, Malta, and Yemen.©MilitaryFactory.com
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Service Year

United States national flag graphic
United States

In Active Service.

Bollinger Shipyards (Louisiana) - USA
(View other Ship-Related Manufacturers)
Marine Protector-class

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National flag of Lebanon National flag of the United States National flag of Uruguay National flag of Yemen Lebanon; Malta; United States; Uruguay; Yemen
(OPERATORS list includes past, present, and future operators when applicable)
Offshore Operation
Activities conducted near shorelines in support of allied activities.

Vessel's hull design is such that it can operate in close-to-shore / shallow water environments.
Onboard systems alert and protect the vessel from airborne, low-flying airborne threats through ballistic and / or missile weaponry.

87.0 ft
26.52 m
19.4 ft
5.91 m
5.6 ft
1.71 m

Installed Power: 2 x MTU marine diesel engines driving 2 x Shafts astern.
Surface Speed
25.0 kts
(28.8 mph)
899 nm
(1,035 mi | 1,666 km)

kts = knots | mph = miles-per-hour | nm = nautical miles | mi = miles | km = kilometers

1 kts = 1.15 mph | 1 nm = 1.15 mi | 1 nm = 1.85 km
2 x 0.50 caliber (12.7mm) Browning M2 Heavy Machine Guns (HMGs).

Also any personal weapons carried by the crew.

Supported Types

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Graphical image of an aircraft heavy machine gun

(Not all weapon types may be represented in the showcase above)

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Images Gallery

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Image of the USCG Marine Protector-class
Image from the U.S. DoD DVIDS imagery database; Public Release.

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