Sept. 28, 2021 —
Photo courtesy of Eastern Shipbuilding
The Coast Guard and Eastern Shipbuilding Group commenced cutting steel for the third offshore patrol cutter (OPC) Sept. 27 in Panama City, Florida.
The Coast Guard ordered construction of the third OPC, Ingham, and acquisition of long lead-time material for the fourth OPC April 29. Contract delivery of Ingham is scheduled to occur in 2024. The Coast Guard plans to acquire 25 of the Heritage-class OPCs.
The OPC meets the service’s long-term need for cutters capable of deploying independently or as part of task groups and is essential to stopping smugglers at sea, interdicting undocumented migrants, rescuing mariners, enforcing fisheries laws, responding to disasters and protecting U.S. ports. OPCs will complement the capabilities of the service’s national security cutters, fast response cutters and polar security cutters as an essential element of the Department of Homeland Security’s layered security strategy.
For more information: Offshore Patrol Cutter Program page