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USCGC Knight Island (WPB-1348)
USCGC Knight island
USCGC Knight Island (WPB-1348)
Career (USCG) Ensign of the United States Coast Guard
Namesake: Knight Island, Alaska
Builder: Bolinger Shipyard in Lockport, Louisiana
Commissioned: April 22, 1992
Homeport: Key West, FL
Identification: NMFN
Status: in active service, as of 2019
General characteristics
Displacement: 168 tons
Length: 110 ft (34 m)
Beam: 21 ft (6.4 m)
Draft: 6.5 ft (2.0 m)
Propulsion: Twin Turbo Charged Diesel Caterpillar
Speed: 30+ knots
Range: 9,900 miles
Endurance: 6 days
Boats & landing
craft carried:
1 - Cutter Boat Medium (90 HP outboard engine)
Complement: 18 personnel (2 officers, 16 enlisted)
Armament: 25 mm Machine Gun
2 x .50 caliber Machine Gun
Various Small Arms

USCGC Knight Island (WPB-1348) receives her namesake from the Knight Island in the Prince William Sounds of Alaska. Knight Island was placed in commission on April 22, 1992 at Bolinger Shipyard in Lockport, Louisiana. Knight Island and the other 48 Island class cutter’s construction are based on the internationally known Vosper-Thornycraft design. Her hull is a semi-displacement type monohull made of high strength steel, while the main deck and superstructure are aluminum. Knight Island employs an active fin stabilization system to improve her sea keeping abilities. With a top speed in excess of 30 knots and a cruising speed of 26 knots, the ship is capable of enduring unsupported operations for six days and accommodates two officers and sixteen enlisted personnel.

Island Class Patrol Boat OverviewEdit

The 110' Island-class Patrol Boats are a U.S. Coast Guard modification of a highly successful British-designed patrol boat. With excellent range and seakeeping capabilities, the Island Class, all named after U.S. islands, replaced the older 95-foot Cape-class patrol boats. These cutters are equipped with advanced electronics and navigation equipment and are used on the front lines of the Coast Guard's Maritime Homeland Security, Migrant Interdiction, Fisheries Enforcement, and Search-and-Rescue missions.

HistoryEdit

Originally homeported in Freeport, Texas, Knight Island’s home port was changed to St. Petersburg, Florida in the summer of 2000. In 2008, Knight Island’s homeport was changed again to Key West, Florida. Knight Island’s current complement is of two separate crews, known as the Port and Starboard Crew in support of the Coast Guard's new effort to maximize the operational hours of the patrol boats in the Coast Guard's Seventh District by utilizing a dual-crew manning concept.

Typical patrols in Key West, Florida’s area of operations involved search and rescue, alien migrant interdiction operations, fisheries law enforcement, counter narcotics operations, and homeland security.

CurrentEdit

Knight Island's main patrol area is the Florida Straits. Knight Island often interdicts illegal migrants from go-fast vessels and homebuilt rustica rafts from Cuba. In the past two years, Knight Island has cared for over 1000 illegal migrants on her decks and conducted numerous politically sensitive repatriations to Cabanas, Cuba.

In January 2010, Knight Island traveled to Bayou La Batre, Alabama for an extensive $750,000 Dry-Dock Package. During the yard period, major projects will be completed by local Yard employees from Master Marine Inc. and ship's crew. Some of the major projects include: Hull and bilge preservation and painting, Main Engine & Generator replacements, numerous tank inspections, cleanings, and preservations, and painting of interior and exterior surfaces. This Dry-dock will help ensure the Knight Island will continue to be a viable asset for the US Coast Guard.

ReferencesEdit

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