“Trump: US to deploy anti-drug Navy ships near Venezuela” –Navy Times

Orthographic map of Venezuela centered on Caracas
Controlled territory in dark green.
Claimed territory in light green.
From Wikipedia, Author: Addicted04

The Navy Times reports,

“President Donald Trump announced Wednesday that Navy ships are being moved toward Venezuela as his administration beefs up counter-narcotics operations in the Caribbean following a U.S. drug indictment against Nicolás Maduro.”

Most of the narcotics trafficking seems to be in the Eastern Pacific rather than the Caribbean. Venezuela’s coasts are on the Caribbean and the Atlantic. Apparently not all the effort will off Venezuela,

“The mission involves sending additional Navy warships, surveillance aircraft and special forces teams to nearly double the U.S. counter-narcotics capacity in the Western Hemisphere, with forces operating both in the Caribbean and eastern Pacific. Esper said the mission would be supported by 22 partner nations.”

Hope we have enough law enforcement detachments.

“Venezuelan Navy Patrol Ship Sinks After Collision With Cruise Ship ” –Maritime-Executive

Graphic from FleetMon report

Maritime-Executive and FleetMon report a curious case in the Caribbean. Looks like, perhaps the Venezuelan Navy attempted an act of piracy against an ice strengthened cruise ship, RCGS Resolute with 35 crewmen aboard, and lost a ship as a result. Warning shots were fired and the Venezuelan vessel attempted to shoulder the cruise ships.

Also this is the second Navantia built warship to sink as a result of collision. The Venezuelan patrol vessel, NAIGUATA, was commissioned in 2011 and is about the size of a Coast Guard 270 foot WMEC, 1720 tons full load, 79.9 m (262 ft) in length. Navantia is also teamed with Bath Ironworks in the US Navy’s FFG(X) Competition.

“Defense Primer: United States Transportation Command” –CRS

Emblem of the United States Transportation Command (TRANSCOM or USTRANSCOM). The original emblem was designed by the U.S. Army Institute of Heraldry.

The Congressional Research Service has issued a short “primer” on TRANSCOM, the US Transportation Command.

The component the Coast Guard has most frequent contact is the Military Sealift Command, MSC.

Coast Guard fixed wing assets may from time to time also be called upon to assist the Air Mobility Command, AMC.

“Coast Guard Directs Cruise Ships To Remain At Sea ‘Indefinitely’”

Cruise ships are docked at PortMiami, Tuesday, March 31, 2020, in Miami. (AP Photo/Wilfredo Lee)

TalkingPointsMemo reports that,

“The U.S. Coast Guard has directed all cruise ships to remain at sea where they may be sequestered “indefinitely” during the coronavirus pandemic and be prepared to send any severely ill passengers to the countries where the vessels are registered.”

This directive is only softened somewhat later in the report.

“The document requires all ships in U.S. waters to report their numbers of sick and dead on board each day or face civil penalties or criminal prosecution.

“Cruise ships with sick passengers must consult with the Coast Guard, which may now recommend keeping the sick person on board the ship. The Coast Guard will decide if a transfer is absolutely necessary, but the cruise line would be responsible for arranging on-shore transportation and hospital beds.”

“Wärtsilä to bring gate rudder technology to global market” –MarineLog

Evaluations of the innovative gate rudder assembly have shown improvements in both efficiency and maneuverability. (Image: copyright: Yamanaka Shipbuilding)

Marine Log reports that,

“Wärtsilä has signed an agreement that will enable it to integrate patented gate rudders into its propulsion product designs. Unlike the traditional arrangement of the rudder in the propeller slipstream, the gate rudder is a twin arrangement around the propeller, allowing improved fuel efficiency and reduced emissions. The concept is applicable to all current vessels equipped with conventional propellers.”

“…the rudder will realize synergies in capital and operational savings for ship owners by increasing fuel efficiency, improving maneuverability and course stability in both calm and rough sea conditions, while also reducing noise and vibration.”

You can see from the photo, when no rudder is required, that the rudder would not be in the accelerated flow behind the prop, thereby reducing drag, but when more extreme turns are required it would be, making it more effective.

The large bosses where the rudder shaft leave the hull might cause more drag than those of a normal rudder. There are of course two required, and it appears they would have to be more strongly built to deal with the torque resulting from the off-center drag on the rudder.

 

“South Korea will deliver two decommissioned Haeuri-Class patrol vessels to Ecuador’s coastguard” –Navy Recognition

One of 22 South Korean Coast Guard Haeuri (type A) patrol vessel (Picture source: Korean Internet)

NavyRecognition reports that South Korea will be transferring two S. Korean Coast Guard vessels to the Ecuadorian Coast Guard.

The vessels are Haeuri patrol vessels, PC302 and PC303. According to my “Combat Fleets of the World,” they entered service in Dec 1990 and 1991 respectfully, so they are coming up on 29 and 30 years old. They are 55.5 meter or 182′ in length overall (53.7 between perpendiculars), have a 7.4 meter or 24.3′ beam, and a draft of 2.48 meters or just over 8′. Displacement is 300 tons light and 460 tons full load. They have a pair of MTU 16V396 diesels for a total of 4,392 HP and a speed of 19 knots, and a range of 2,100 nmi at 15 knots. Crew is four officers and 35 enlisted. Armament is a 20mm Vulcan Gatling gun and four .50 cal. (From what I have found, these ships may look a bit different from the photo above, which was included with the story. A photo of PC301 from Combat Fleets shows a vessel with a lattice mast, stack, and no boat or crane on the stern.)

The Ecuador’s Coast Guard currently has a pair of 50 meter Damen patrol vessels and four Damen Stan 2600 vessels similar to the 87 foot Marine Protector Class.

Since Ecuador’s EEZ is in the Eastern Pacific Drug transit zone, there is a good chance the US Coast Guard may interact with these vessels.