June 15, 2017 —
Crewmembers of Coast Guard Cutter Bailey Barco gather on the deck during the vessel’s commissioning ceremony in Juneau, Alaska, June 14, 2017. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 1st Class Jon-Paul Rios.
The Coast Guard commissioned the 22nd fast response cutter (FRC), Bailey Barco, in Juneau, Alaska, June 14.
The cutter is the second FRC based in Ketchikan, Alaska, on the West Coast and in the Coast Guard’s 17th District, which includes coastal and inland waters surrounding Alaska.
The cutter is named after Bailey Barco. As keeper of the Dam Neck Mills lifesaving station in Virginia, Barco led the rescue of five men stranded aboard the schooner Jennie Hall, which had run aground in a storm. After rescuing four men via the breeches buoy, Barco and his crewmembers launched the surfboat and rescued the remaining man aboard the schooner. Barco was posthumously awarded the Gold Lifesaving Medal for his actions.
FRCs feature advanced command, control, communication, computers, intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance equipment; the ability to launch and recover cutter boats from astern or via side davits; and improved seakeeping and habitability. The cutters, which are designed to patrol coastal regions, are replacing the 1980s-era 110-foot Island-class patrol boats. FRCs are complemented operationally by the offshore capabilities of the national security cutters and by the extended range and endurance of the offshore patrol cutters.
Thirty-eight of the planned 58 FRCs have been ordered. Twenty-two are in service: two in Ketchikan; two in Cape May, New Jersey; six in Miami; six in Key West, Florida; and six in San Juan, Puerto Rico. The first FRC to be stationed in Pascagoula, Mississippi, the Benjamin Dailey, is scheduled for commissioning in July.
For more information: Fast Response Cutter program page