More on the Webber Class WMECs

The Coast Guard Cutter Robert Ward (WPC-1130) is shown shortly after mooring for the first time at its homeport at Coast Guard Base Los Angeles-Long Beach, Oct. 31, 2018. The Robert Ward is the second of four new Fast Response Cutters to be stationed in San Pedro, which will help to protect the people, ports and waterways of the region and maintain security for the global supply chain and critical infrastructure within California. (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Chief Petty Officer Brandyn Hill)

Attended the commissioning of the 30th Webber class cutter, USCGC Robert Ward (WPC-1130) today, March 2.. Eleventh District Commander and Commander Pacific Area were there, and their remarks made it clear that they will try to get the most out of these little ships.

They noted that one of the class was off Central America in the Eastern Pacific drug transit zone and another was in Kwajalein (about 2125 nautical miles from Oahu). As noted earlier these vessels are performing missions that previously would have required a medium endurance cutter.

I asked crew members about what seems to be a relatively limited notional endurance of five days. I was told that they had gone six or seven days between replenishment, but once again the limited capacity of the washer/dryer was mentioned as I had heard in a comment on an earlier post. Might be worthwhile to look into a higher capacity washer/dryer and finding a bit more food storage.

In any case, these vessels are doing things that no Coast Guard patrol boats have done before.

15 thoughts on “More on the Webber Class WMECs

    • We have heard some reports of astern refueling for this type.

      It does mean that there is a need for a larger ship to accompany or support it at least part of the way.

      Pairing a larger cutter with one or more Webber class may not be a bad idea.

      • Of course the vessels going South from California to Central America don’t need to be refueled at sea. They have plenty of places to stop and replenish at ports in Mexico and Central America.

  1. Is there actually any free deck space where they can receive sling loaded stores from a helicopter? I see a lot of shade canopy which fits the mission in tropical areas but isn’t hospitable to a net full of fresh and frozen food.

  2. Sounds to me like the far deployed cutters could use a Forward Logistics Ship nee mothership. Some vessel which could supply fuel, provisions and POL and some M&R. Like the Maritime Support Vessel which SOUTHCOM has on charter?

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  4. More evidence that the Webber class ships are being used more like MECs.

    “Coast Guard Cutters Forward (WMEC-911), William Flores (WPC-1103) and Isaac Mayo (WPC-1112) crews, partnering with the Colombian navy, participated in a regional engagement event in Cartagena, Colombia. Transnational criminal organizations employ various methods and techniques to illegally traffic drugs, weapons, people and money. Future operations, best practices, and how the Coast Guard and Colombian navy can further enhance partnerships when countering illicit activity in the region were discussed.”

    This is still in the Caribbean, but it is long way from their homeports in Miami and Key West. Wonder if Forward might have been providing a degree of support?

  5. Another report indicating how these are being used like WMECs, this one from CCGD5: nice photo too.

    Coast Guard Cutter Nathan Bruckenthal returns from demanding offshore deployment
    MOREHEAD CITY, N.C. — The crew of the Coast Guard Cutter Nathan Bruckenthal (WPC 1128) returned to homeport following a scheduled patrol of the U.S. Economic Exclusion Zone (EEZ) along the Atlantic seaboard.
    The crew of the Nathan Bruckenthal patrolled the outer edge of the Exclusive Economic Zone, which extends from the coastline outward to 200 miles offshore, to suppress illegal fishing in U.S. waters.
    “This patrol demonstrated the superb capabilities of the U.S. Coast Guard’s new Sentinel Class Fast Response Cutters,” said Lt. Andrew Corwell, commanding officer of the Nathan Bruckenthal. “Furthermore, it highlighted the teamwork, professionalism, and initiative of Nathan Bruckenthal’s crew to successfully execute this mission despite the challenging off-shore domain and ongoing COVID-19 pandemic on-shore. I am extremely proud of what we were able to accomplish.”
    The Coast Guard continues its patrols of the Exclusive Economic Zone to protect domestic fish stocks and the U.S. fishing industry from foreign encroachment despite the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. This mission is one of the eleven statutory missions of the Coast Guard, and one that the Sentinel Class Fast Response Cutters are aptly suited to perform. The Coast Guard acquired the first Sentinel Class cutter in 2012, with the namesake of each cutter being one of the service’s many enlisted heroes.

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