Coast Guard to Hold “In Commission Special” Ceremony for First National Security Cutter

WASHINGTON, D .C. – The Coast Guard will hold a ceremony this Thursday, May 8, 2008 at 1:00 pm in Pascagoula, Miss., to acknowledge preliminary acceptance (delivery) and “In-Commission Special” status of its first National Security Cutter, BERTHOLF (WMSL 750). Not to be confused with a Commissioning, Thursday’s event is meant to recognize the importance of reaching this milestone and to formally transfer the cutter to a Coast Guard crew. “In Commission Special” status begins when the Coast Guard crew takes possession of the vessel. It then enters a post-delivery period of approximately 22-24 months, during which crew training, operational evaluation and certification, and regularly scheduled maintenance availabilities will occur to ensure it meets all performance and operational requirements.

Preliminary acceptance is a major milestone in BERTHOLF’s transition to full operational status in the Coast Guard’s fleet and represents transfer of ownership of the National Security Cutter to the Coast Guard.

The 418-foot BERTHOLF, lead ship in the new Legend-class of cutters, is designed to be the flagship of the U.S. Coast Guard’s modern fleet. Capable of executing the most challenging maritime safety and security missions around the globe, BERTHOLF is the first of eight NSCs planned to be built by the Coast Guard. A formal commissioning ceremony will take place on Coast Guard Day, August 4, 2008 in Alameda, Calif.

More information on the NSC can be found online at http://www.uscg.mil/acquisition/nsc/default.asp.

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