Navy Ships Recommissioned as Coast Guard Cutters

By JO1(SW) Jason McKnight - Navy Compass



Editor's Note - Normally Jack's Joint does not reprint recent news articles but this one will be an exception. - Jack

Friday, October 08, 2004


CORONADO - The Navy turned over operational command of two Cyclone-class coastal patrol ships, USS Monsoon (PC 4) and USS Zephyr (PC 8), to the U.S. Coast Guard in a ceremony held on Naval Amphibious Base Coronado Oct. 1.
The acquisition of the two West Coast ships together with two others on the East Coast will enhance the Coast Guard’s ability to do its job of protecting the nation’s harbors by helping to ensure maritime dominance.

“The Coast Guard has had to radically change the way it defends our nation, but it has the expertise and experience necessary to do this job,” said Commander, Navy Region Southwest, Rear Adm. Jose L. Betancourt.

Betancourt said the Navy-Coast Guard partnership has always been strong and the Navy is always looking for ways to enhance it.

Commander, Coast Guard Pacific Area Vice Adm. Harvey E. Johnson, Jr. said the Coast Guard will continue the ships’ tradition of excellence as they are integrated into the cutter fleet.

“To the nation, this transfer demonstrates our government’s commitment to ensuring our national security,” said Johnson. “The ships and their crews will conduct smuggling interdiction operations, enforce our laws, protect our borders and save lives.”

Coast Guard cuttermen and officers were on hand to man the ships and man the first watches as the ships were energized and placed into commission as cutters USCGC Monsoon (WPC 4) and USCGC (WPC 8) near the end of the ceremony.

Many cuttermen said the month-long turnover experience of working side-by-side with their Navy Sailor counterparts was gratifying.

“We worked well together, and some friendships even developed over the last four weeks,” said Storekeeper 1st Class William Miller, a new crewman on Zephyr.
Machinery Technician Fireman Israel Chavarria, of Monsoon, said he encountered no resistance from the Navy Sailors when he would ask questions about the engineering equipment.

Zephyr Chief Boatswain’s Mate Greg Isbell said he turned down orders to be the executive officer of an aids-to-navigation cutter when he learned that the coastal patrol ships were being turned over to the Coast Guard.
“I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to be on one of the fastest, most capable cutters in the fleet,” said Isbell.


LCDR John Ingram Submitted the following article for inclusion

The United States Navy

Patrol Coastal Ships - PC

Updated: 5 October 2004


 Description: The primary mission of these ships is coastal patrol and interdiction surveillance, an important aspect of littoral operations outlined in the Navy's strategy, Forward...From the Sea. The Cyclone class PCs are particularly suited for the maritime homeland security mission and have been employed jointly with the U.S. Coast Guard to help protect our nation's coastline, ports and waterways from terrorist attack.

Background: The Cyclone class ships are assigned to Commander, Naval Special Forces. Of the thirteen ships, nine operate out of the Naval Amphibious Base, Little Creek, Va., and four operate from the Naval Amphibious Base, Coronado, Calif. These ships provide the U.S. Navy with a fast, reliable platform that can respond to emergent requirements in a shallow water environment. The lead ship of the class, Cyclone (PC 1), was decommissioned and turned over to the U.S. Coast Guard 28 February 2000. The Navy and Coast Guard announced in August 2004 that five more will be turned over to the Coast Guard beginning in October 2004.

Point of Contact:
Public Affairs Office
Naval Sea Systems Command
Washington, DC 20362


General Characteristics, Cyclone Class

Builders: Bollinger Shipyards, Inc.
Power Plant: Four Paxman diesels; four shafts; 3,350 shaft horsepower
Length: 170 feet (51.82 meters)
Beam: 25 feet (7.62 meters)
Displacement: 331 tons (336.31 metric tons) full load
Speed: 35 knots (40 miles per hour; 65 kilometers/hr.)
USS Tempest (PC 2), Little Creek, Va. - to be turned over to Coast Guard
USS Hurricane (PC 3), San Diego, Calif.
USS Typhoon (PC 5), Little Creek, Va.
USS Sirocco (PC 6), Little Creek, Va.
USS Squall (PC 7), San Diego, Calif.
USS Chinook (PC 9), Little Creek, Va.
USS Firebolt (PC 10) , Little Creek, Va.
USS Whirlwind (PC 11), Little Creek, Va.
USS Thunderbolt (PC 12), Little Creek, Va.
Crew: Four officers, 24 enlisted personnel
Armament: One MK 96 and one MK 38 25mm machine guns; Five .50 caliber machine guns; two MK 19 40mm automatic grenade launchers; Two M-60 machine guns.


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