Jordan took delivery of two response boats-medium (RB-Ms) this summer. The 45-foot small craft were delivered to the Royal Jordanian Naval Force under the Foreign Military Sales program in coordination with the U.S. Coast Guard and the Department of Homeland Security. The self-righting boats have a top speed in excess of 40 knots, a 24-hour mission duration, and displace fewer than 20 tons. Typically crewed by four personnel, they can carry an additional five passengers. Features include a forward-looking infrared camera system for night operations and port and starboard rescue wells for water retrievals. Once operational at their new base at Aqaba, the RB-Ms likely will be tasked with maritime security, search-and-rescue, drug interdiction, and visit, board, search-and-seizure operations as well as various patrol duties. More than 170 similar units have been delivered to the U.S. Coast Guard since 2008. Six additional RB-Ms are on order for the Kingdom of Bahrain.
By Eric Wertheim