Lock, Stock and a Sandy Bottom
You are a small island nation with an ageing naval infrastructure and an equally ageing fleet of small patrol vessels in need of replacement.
The solution is simple, just get the cheque book out and replace the lot.
The Royal Bahamas Defence Force has contracted with Damen and Van Oord for 9 vessles and a range of port facilities under the ‘Sandy Bottom’ project.
The whole project is costing just under £130 million in addition to the port facilities[UPDATE]
The latest (March 2014) costs have been stated as $149 million for the ships and $75 million for the port facilities[/UPDATE]
Dr Sandy Nottage, Minister of National Security, said
This $200 million venture will represent the single largest investment to date in the Defence Force’s history
The Royal Bahamas Defence Force get;
These are 42m blue water patrol vessels with a maximum speed of more than 20 knots. These are the same type as in service with the UK Border Agency.
These are a smaller coastal patrol vessel using the axe bow design
A 600 tonne, 52 metre, multi purpose cargo vessel with a landing ramp and 25 tonne crane. It can carry 42 containers on deck with water and oil in fitted tanks. These will be used for logistic support and disaster relief and included in the deal are a number of containers specifically for the disaster relief mission.
A refit for the two Bahamas Class Patrol Vessels
The refit will extend the life of the VT Halter patrol vessels.