Coast Guard announced cutter for Valdez

Posted: Thursday, January 16, 2003

JUNEAU (AP) -- The Coast Guard will send its cutter Long Island to Valdez this fall, the agency announced Wednesday.

The 110-foot Island-class patrol boat will move north from San Diego.

''The Coast Guard is committed to providing safe and secure waterways along America's coasts,'' said Vice Adm. Terry Cross, commander of the Coast Guard's Pacific Area. ''This homeport change, along with the recent addition of two 87-foot patrol boats in San Diego, will help us accomplish that goal.''

The Coast Guard commissioned the Long Island in 1991 with a crew of 17. Originally based in Monterey, Calif., the cutter moved to San Diego in 1999.

The cutter's primary missions include search and rescue, homeland security, counter-drug enforcement, migrant interdiction and fisheries enforcement.

The Coast Guard has 49 Island-class patrol boats, a modification of British-designed patrol boats. They began replacing the older 95-foot Cape-class patrol boats in the late 1980s.

U.S. Sen. Ted Stevens announced last week that the Coast Guard would home-port a cutter in Valdez, home of the trans-Alaska pipeline terminus.

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