Photo: BAE systems
We don’t hear about it often, but the Coast Guard also needs to recapitalize its inland fleet, WLI, WLIC, and WLRs. There are 35 of these. One entered service in 1944, another in 1945. The two newest entered service in 1990, but all the rest are much older. Two entered service in the ’50s. 23 in the ’60s, and six in the 70s. .
Whenever we belatedly get around to replacing these, there is an innovation we might want to look at, high-lift flap rudders. These were recently used on a Jones Act Articulated Tug Barge (ATB). Reportedly it provides much improved maneuverability.