The Northwest Maritime Academy to Host the University of Hawaii for Fast Rescue Boat Training

By Capt. Thomas E. Bliss

We are very excited to welcome the University of Hawaii to the Northwest Maritime Academy at Gig Harbor Marina & Boatyard for three days of intensive training in Fast Rescue Boat (FRB) operation.  This will be our inaugural FRB training in Gig Harbor and it’s all hands on deck for this course.

The Academy’s training partners, MITAGS-PMI, initially fielded the call from the University of Hawaii for this training, and through our joint training support agreement with PMI the crew at NWMA was ready, willing and able to fill the bill.

The crew of the R/V Kilo Moana, a 186’ Small Waterplane Area Twin Hull (SWATH) vessel owned by the U.S. Navy and operated by the University of Hawaii Marine Center, will join the Training Cadre of the Northwest Maritime Academy to fulfill their requirements for Fast Rescue Boat Training March 2-4 in Gig Harbor, Washington.  The Kilo Moana is a very special vessel due to its unique SWATH design, making it a stable and comfortable platform from which to conduct oceanographic research.

Fast Rescue Boat

HONOLULU (AUG. 14, 2009) THE OFFICE OF NAVAL RESEARCH SMALL WATERPLANE AREA TWIN-HULL OCEANOGRAPHIC RESEARCH SHIP R/V KILO MOANA TAKES PART IN THE SECOND RADIANCE IN A DYNAMIC OCEAN (RADYO) PROGRAM, AN AT-SEA RESEARCH EXPERIMENT IN HONOLULU. TWENTY-FIVE RESEARCHERS FROM THE US, CANADA, POLAND AND AUSTRALIA PARTICIPATED IN THE RADYO EXPERIMENT. RESULTS FROM THIS PROJECT ARE EXPECTED TO ENHANCE OUR KNOWLEDGE OF IMAGING THROUGH THE AIR-SEA INTERFACE AND THROUGH-THE-SURFACE OPTICAL COMMUNICATIONS. (U.S. NAVY PHOTO/RELEASED)

The ship was designed as a multi-purpose oceanographic research vessel with extensive equipment for geophysical (2 multi-beam echo sounders, sub-bottom profiler, gravimeter and magnetometer), physical oceanographic (Doppler current profilers, CTDs, pCO2), meteorological and radioisotope research.

The Kilo Moana has over 2,500 square feet of space provided in eight different laboratories. More than 4,000 square feet of exterior working space is available on the aft main deck and the forward 01 deck. The Kilo Moana was built in 2001 and commissioned in 2002. The vessel operates out of Honolulu, Hawaii, and has worked throughout the Pacific.

Select members of the Kilo Moana will join us at the Northwest Maritime Academy on March 2 to start their training in the safe operation of Fast Rescue Boats in our Maritime City.

We will be conducting training evolutions in the harbor, including the safe lowering of a FRB into the water with rescue personnel on board, righting a capsized boat, towing, and search and rescue operations or SAR. You may monitor our communications on VHF Channel 13. Local residents may see activity in and around the harbor that appears to be vessels in distress or persons in the water, but this is all part of our training with the University of Hawaii’s crew of the Kilo Moana.

Fast Rescue BoatThe Northwest Maritime Academy wishes to thank the amazing team at Gig Harbor Marina & Boatyard for their assistance in coordinating this effort, and The Inn at Gig Harbor for their hospitality in housing our guests for the duration of their stay with us.

Capt. Thomas E. Bliss is Director of Training at the Northwest Maritime Academy

Leave a Comment