VESSEL REVIEW | Princesse Gabriella – Multi-role response boat enters service with Monaco’s maritime police
Italian shipbuilder Effebi has handed over a new fast patrol and surveillance boat to the Marine and Airport Police Division (Division de Police Maritime et Aéroportuaire; DPMA) of the Principality of Monaco.
The RINA-classed vessel has been named Princesse Gabriella after the six-year-old daughter of the principality’s monarch and head of state, Prince Albert II. The newbuild will replace the response vessel La Vigilante, which has been in service with the DPMA for over 30 years.
Although it was originally designed to conduct maritime border control and port security duties, the newer craft is also fully equipped to carry out firefighting, search and rescue (SAR), medical evacuation, marine pollution control, and VIP protection duties at sea and in coastal areas. The multi-role platform significantly enhances the emergency response capability of the DPMA, which is a modest force of roughly 60 personnel.
The boat has an LOA of 23.8 metres, a beam of 5.6 metres, a draught of 1.3 metres, and a displacement of approximately 60 tonnes at full load. A pair of diesel engines that each produce 1,342 kW drive conventional propellers to deliver a maximum speed of 30 knots, enabling the vessel to cover the 12 nautical miles between Monaco and the northern Italian port of Ventimiglia in as little as 17 minutes, as claimed by DPMA director Isabelle Castelli. Long-endurance missions are also possible thanks to a total fuel capacity of 2,500 litres, and the vessel can even spend up to 48 hours out at sea if needed.
Two bow thrusters have been fitted to assist in manoeuvring during mooring/unmooring and even during emergency situations.
Among the boat’s emergency response features are an onboard infirmary where first aid can be properly administered to up to six stretcher-bound patients even while in transit and at-sea firefighting equipment consisting of a pump with a flow rate of 4,500 litres per minute and monitors. Cabins boasting improved comfort and safety are available for use by the six crewmembers.
The vessel is also fitted with two radars from Furuno, a mast-mounted night vision camera with a 360-degree field of view, satellite communications equipment, an echosounder, and an autopilot. It also has a weapons mount for a 7.62-millimetre general-purpose machine gun on the bow, an aft dive platform that may also be used for SAR purposes, equipment for towing of small distressed vessels, and a crane that can lift up to 400 kilograms.
Princesse Gabriella was handed over to the DPMA in December 2020 and has since begun operating in the Mediterranean Sea. As with the two other vessels in the current fleet of the DPMA, the new patrol boat will be operated jointly with personnel from Monaco’s two other uniformed service branches, namely, the civil defence and firefighting corps and the palace guards company.
|Type of vessel:||Patrol/Response boat|
|Owner:||Marine Airport and Police Division, Monaco|
|Operator:||Marine Airport and Police Division, Monaco|
|Length overall:||23.8 metres|
|Main engines:||2 x 1,342 kW|
|Propulsion:||2 x propellers|
|Maximum speed:||30 knots|
|Radars:||2 x Furuno|
|Cameras/night vision:||Mast-mounted night vision camera|
|Crane:||400kg lifting capacity|
|Other deck equipment:||Towing equipment|
|Armament:||7.62mm machine gun|
|Other equipment installed:||Aft dive/SAR platform|
|Firefighting equipment:||Fire pump; monitors|
|Type of fuel:||Diesel|
|Fuel capacity:||2,500 litres|
|Accommodation:||Crew cabins; infirmary|