Coast Guard Sector St. Petersburg receives their first 154-foot fast response cutter (FRC), Sunday.
Coast Guard Cutter Pablo Valent, a Sentinel-class vessel, will arrive at its new homeport where the crew will begin training to become certified in law enforcement and rescue operations.
Pablo Valent is scheduled to be officially commissioned May 11, 2022.
Pablo Valent will operate throughout the Gulf of Mexico and the Florida Keys. There are 12 other FRCs in Florida, which operate throughout the Caribbean Sea.
FRC’s are multi-mission ships designed to conduct: drug and migrant interdictions; ports, waterways and coastal security operations; fisheries and environmental protection patrols; national defense missions; and search and rescue.
Each cutter is designed for a crew of 24, has a range of 2,500 miles and is equipped for patrols up to five days. The FRCs are part of the Coast Guard’s overall fleet modernization initiative.
FRCs feature advanced command, control, communications, computers, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance equipment as well as over-the-horizon response boat deployment capability and improved habitability for the crew. The ships can reach speeds of 28 knots and are equipped to coordinate operations with partner agencies and long-range Coast Guard assets such as the Coast Guard’s National Security Cutters.