AWARDS 2023 | Best Medium Patrol Boat – Balchik – Baltic Workboats

Best Medium Patrol Boat – Balchik (Photo: Baltic Workboats)
Best Medium Patrol Boat – Balchik (Photo: Baltic Workboats)

At 45 metres LOA, this patrol boat is nearing the maximum size of boats built, to date, by the fast growing Estonian aluminium boat designer and builder Baltic Workboats (BWB).

Much of BWB's production is for export and, as it was built for the Bulgarian Border Police, this vessel is no exception. Followers of Baltic Workboats will be familiar with the boat's patented wave-piercing bow and its great seaworthiness that is necessitated, in this case, for its operations in the Black and Mediterranean seas. As is usual with Baltic Workboats vessels, this is a fine and impressive craft.

"It is our company's second 45-metre wave-piercing patrol vessel and is designed for operations in the Black and Mediterranean Seas," Rimo Timm, Head of Sales at Baltic Workboats, told Baird Maritime. "Although similar to a 45-metre vessel we delivered to the Estonian Police and Border Guard a couple of years ago for use in the Baltic Sea, the newer boat required some changes in the general systems and the HVAC setup to allow operation in considerably warmer climates."

Timm said that there were also additional design changes according to the customer's wishes such as an additional daughter boat on the deck and the installation of a flybridge on the roof of the wheelhouse. The customer has also praised the boat's spaciousness, its responsiveness, and its ability to reach top speeds in excess of 30 knots under favourable conditions.

"Since the vessel was the second in a series, we had quite a good grasp of the concept behind it. Nonetheless, the design required certain modifications that had to be discussed with and approved by the customer. There was also some delays with the gearbox delivery, which then had an impact on our delivery schedule, but we were able to satisfy the terms of the contract."

Timm added that constructive feedback from the customer and quick response times helped simplify the decision-making process during the construction, thus allowing for design changes to be implemented seamlessly.

"We see more and more that customers are putting great emphasis on the IT security of vessels in general and more specifically to the security of navigation and communications systems," Timm told Baird Maritime when asked about the current state of the global maritime security industry. "Furthermore, there will be a class requirements update in the middle of this year, which means there will be additional requirements for electric and control systems safety installed on board newbuilds.

Timm remarked that equipment manufacturers and shipyards therefore have to adapt and modify their existing procedures and equipment.

"It is fair to say that this topic will be subjected to increased attention in the coming years. To stay competitive, you have to be able to keep up with the latest developments."

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Baird Maritime / Work Boat World