Emergency Service Vessel News Roundup | May 24 – A US Navy fast medical transport, Swedish rescue hydrofoil boats and more

An Australian rescue organisation welcomes two new boats to its fleet as development is underway on a Swedish-designed, all-electric response craft. The US Navy names a future medical ship while a Massachusetts fire department places an order for a new vessel capable of year-round dive operations.

Australia’s Marine Rescue New South Wales takes delivery of RIB pair

Photo: Marine Rescue New South Wales

Australian rescue organisation Marine Rescue New South Wales recently took delivery of two new rigid inflatable boats (RIBs) in a series from local builder Yamba Welding and Engineering and New Zealand-based Naiad Design, sister companies under The Whiskey Project Group.

Tuggerah Lakes 21 and Batemans Bay 21 are each powered by twin Suzuki outboard engines and are capable of reaching speeds of 38 knots.

Both RIBs are each fitted with a full Raymarine suite of maritime navigation equipment. Tuggerah Lakes 21 has additional equipment in the form of a Teledyne FLIR rotating thermal camera.

Electric hydrofoil rescue craft undergoing development in Sweden

Photo: Research Institutes of Sweden/Magnus Wikander

The Swedish Sea Rescue Society, the Research Institutes of Sweden (RISE), and other local partners are developing a new type of rescue boat fitted with hydrofoils and all-electric propulsion.

The development of the vessel under the Electric Innovation for emission-free Sea Rescue boats (ELINN) project includes construction and trials using a six-metre technology demonstrator and a nine-metre full-scale boat.

While the full-scale boat is still under construction, the smaller demonstrator craft will soon begin trial sailings with the hydrofoil installation and a 20kW propulsion unit. Magnus Wikander, a senior naval architect at RISE, said the trials will be used to collect measurement data and to provide an opportunity for the calibration of the hydrofoil’s flight control system.

Massachusetts’ Boston Fire Department orders catamaran dive boat

Photo: Moose Boats

The Special Operations Dive Team of Massachusetts’ Boston Fire Department has selected Lind Marine’s Moose Boats division to supply a new custom dive boat.

The catamaran vessel will be 46 feet (14 metres) long and will be powered by two Cummins engines with a combined output of 1,200 hp (894 kW). An enclosed cabin will help reduce fatigue from the elements during long-duration dive operations.

Boston Fire Department Captain Doug Felton said the vessel will be operated year-round instead of only seasonally, as is the case with the department’s current dive boat.

Name selected for US Navy’s first expeditionary medical ship

Photo: Austal USA

The first in a new class of US Navy expeditionary medical ship (EMS) will be named USNS Bethesda, US Secretary of the Navy Carlos Del Toro confirmed recently.

The name was chosen in honour of Naval Support Activity Bethesda in Maryland, home to the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center.

The EMS will be a variant of the navy’s Spearhead-class expeditionary fast transports and will also be built by Austal USA. It will measure 361 by 103 feet (110 by 31.5 metres) and will have medical facilities including isolation rooms, operating rooms, intensive care compartments, and acute care rooms.

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