Spain’s Salvamento Maritimo maritime search and rescue (SAR) agency has taken delivery of two new 7.5-metre aluminium rigid inflatable boats (RIBs) in a series from Portuguese builder Vanguard Marine.
LS-Elara and LS-Cilene will be added to the Salvamento Maritimo fleet but will be operated primarily by the Spanish Red Cross. LS-Elara will operate out of the Salvamento Maritimo base in the port of Tazacorte, in La Palma located on the Canary Islands, while LS-Cilene will operate in Castellón, on the east coast of Spain.
Each RIB has an aluminium hull with a deep-V shape design to combine fast navigation with optimal wave cutting. The hull also has three watertight compartments and an integrated bow locker for stowage of material.
A removable access door has been installed on the starboard side to facilitate water rescues, resulting on a boat deck at sea level with direct access.
The deck surface is covered with anti-slip material on the entire walking surface and is prepared to accept different configurations depending on the needs. For this purpose, it has a rail system that allows quick assembly/disassembly of the seats and their location in different positions.
Both RIBs are also equipped with four Ullman jockey seats with suspension system and a custom-made aluminium console.
Another main element of these two boats is their D-shaped perimeter tube, which optimises the free deck of the boat (gaining approximately half a metre of inner beam) while making it impossible to cause puncture damages. The tube consists of a core of five independent inflatable chambers lined with closed-cell polyethylene foam covered with high-strength polyurethane fabric, a SOLAS-certified material that provides excellent abrasion, puncture and hydrocarbon resistance properties.
Four intercommunication valves allow different inflation and deflation modes according to operators’ needs.
Two Mercury 111kW engines deliver a top speed of 45 knots and a cruising speed of 20 knots with 500 kilograms of cargo.
The boats also possess self-righting ability.
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