CAPE PROVIDENCE, 1959
Builder: Coast Guard Yard, Curtis Bay, MD
Commissioned: 21 July 1959
Decommissioned: 30 August 1968
Disposition: Transferred to South Korea, 24 September 1968, as PB 6
Length: 95’ oa; 90’ wl
Navigation Draft: 6’2”
Beam: 20’ max.
Displacement (tons): 98 fl (C)
Main Engines: 4 Cummins VT-600 diesels; 2 Detroit 16V149 diesels (renovated)
BHP: 2,200; 2,470 (renovated)
Performance, Max. Speed: 22 kts.; 24 kts. (renovated)
Performance, Cruising: 12 kts., 1,780-mi radius (1961)
Fuel Capacity: 3,114 gallons
Complement: 15 (1961)
Radar: SPS-64 (1987)
Armament: 2 .50-cal. machine guns (as completed). 2 12.7mm mg, 2 40mm Mk 64 grenade launchers (1987)
Class history—The 95-foot or Cape class was an outgrowth of a need for shallow-draft anti-submarine-warfare (ASW) craft brought on by the increasing tensions during the years immediately following World War II. During the period of construction, three distinctive sub-classes evolved as the Coast Guard’s mission emphasis shifted from ASW to search and rescue (SAR), The A Type 95-footer was outfitted primarily for ASW. The B Type differed by mounting a 40 mm vice 20 mm gun and being fitted with scramble nets, a towing bit, and a large searchlight – all important SAR tools. The C Type units were constructed without the heavy armament and for economy some of the SAR equipment was also deleted. However, the Coast Guard added these SAR items to both the As and Cs during various refits. A renovation program began in the mid-1970s but was ended, due to increasing expenses and a shortage of funds, after 16 boats had been overhauled.
The 95-footers were designed by the Coast Guard and built at the Coast Guard Yard. Their hulls were made of steel while their superstructures were made of aluminum. This proved to be problematic throughout their service lives due to electrolysis between the dissimilar metals.
These cutters remained unnamed until January of 1964.
The Cape Providence was stationed at Nawiliwili, HI, from 1959 to 1964. She was used for law enforcement and SAR. From 1965 to 1968, she was stationed at Pago Pago, Samoa. On 18 March 1959, she towed the disabled small craft Sea Gull 25 miles southeast of Nawiliwili. On 28 November 1966, she rescued 13 survivors from F/V Main Sun No. 2 off Pago Pago. Four others were rescued by F/V Chie Hong, two lives were lost.
Cutter History File. USCG Historian's Office, USCG HQ, Washington, D.C.
Robert Scheina. U.S. Coast Guard Cutters & Craft, 1946-1990. Annapolis, MD: Naval Institute Press, 1990.