Beefing up Security

Griffon Hovercraft Ltd of Southampton, England, have supplied the newly-established Coast Guard Region (North East) in Kolkata, India, with a state-of-the-art H-188 Hovercraft.

West Bengal gets state-of-the-art hovercraft to beef up maritime security

The newly-established Coast Guard Region (North East) in Kolkata has inducted a latest model of Air Cushion Vessel (ACV) or hovercraft to be based at Haldia. The new hovercraft reached Haldia on Thursday afternoon.

The Coast Guard station at Haldia already has two hovercrafts but the H-188 is a much advanced version built by Griffon Hovercraft Ltd (GFL) in Southampton, England and reached Haldia on Thursday afternoon. This is the second in the lot of 12 hovercrafts ordered from GFL. The hovercraft will be commanded by Commandant D Dinakaran, a specialist in information technology. The first one was stationed in Okha, Gujarat, in June.

“H-188 is equipped with modern, state of the art sensors and equipment. It is 21m long with two 1,000 BHP Iveco engines and can attain a speed of 50 knots using aero-dynamic propulsion. At economical speed, the ACV has an endurance of 480 nautical miles and is specially designed for day and night operations in shallow waters and can undertake maritime search and rescue and surveillance. The armed hovercraft with an inflatable boat can undertake boarding, landing and Special Operations as well as coastal security operations,” an official said.

According to him, the ACV will enhance operational capability and allow the Coast Guard to maintain its effective presence in the Sunderbans and adjoining coastal areas of the state. This induction is part of the Coast Guard’s expansion plan to expand and modernize its fleet. The hovercraft will be commanded by Commandant D Dinakaran, a specialist in information technology. H-188 will have a complement of two officers and 11 enrolled personnel.

Source: Times of India

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