USCGC Reliance says goodbye to Portsmouth Naval Shipyard

The US Coast Guard cutter Reliance crew will today depart on patrol from the Naval Shipyard in Portsmouth, New Hampshire and return in August to its new homeport of Naval Air Station Pensacola in Florida.

cutter
Photo: USCG

After 32 years homeported in New Hampshire, Reliance will continue service with two other 210-foot medium endurance cutters homeported at Naval Air Station Pensacola, allowing the coast guard to better leverage efficiencies gained by clustering vessels of the same class.

The cutter has shifted homeports several times since its commissioning on June 24, 1964. Reliance has been homeported in Corpus Christi, Texas, Yorktown, Virginia, and Port Canaveral, Florida. More recently, Reliance replaced U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Vigilant in New Castle, New Hampshire in 1988, and in 1996, shifted berths to the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard.

During the time in New Hampshire, Reliance has contributed to the USCG missions of search and rescue, living marine resource protection, and safeguarding New England port and waterways. 

Reliance was originally designed with a stern exhaust system, a three inch gun deck capable of manning a 40 mm. antisubmarine cannon, a helicopter pad capable of carrying the out of commission HH-52 rotary wing aircraft, and a power plant system that combined diesel and gas combustion. 

After undergoing a major maintenance availability in 1987, she was modified to include two pitch controlled main diesel engines capable of reaching a max speed of 18 knots, an exhaust stack that is presented amidships, an armament of one 25 mm. automatic machine gun and two .50 caliber machine guns, and a flight deck capable of carrying and deploying an MH-65 Dolphin helicopter.

Photo: USCG

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