CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - The Coast Guard cutter James is sailing into its new homeport of Charleston today, making it the second National Security Cutter (NSC) to have a home port on the East Coast.
The James was commissioned on August 8 in Boston.
The NSC is prized as the most technologically sophisticated cutter in the Coast Guard, a news release states, capable of performing homeland security, law enforcement, and national defense missions around the world.
Coast Guard officials say the cutters' design provides better sea-keeping, higher sustained transit speeds, greater endurance and range, and the ability to launch and recover small boats from astern, as well as aviation support facilities and a flight deck for helicopters and unmanned aerial vehicles.
James will have a crew of about 120 people.
"While serving aboard the Coast Guard's newest national asset, we continue to strive to be worthy of the great legacy of our namesake, Capt. Joshua James," said Capt. Andrew J. Tiongson, Cutter James commanding officer.
Captain Joshua James of Hull, Massachusetts is credited with saving more than 600 lives while serving with the U.S. Life-Saving Service, which merged with the Revenue Cutter Service in 1915 to form its modern incarnation as the U.S. Coast Guard.
The Coast Guard has been serving on the seas for more than 225 years to maintain maritime safety, efficiency, and security in the Western Hemisphere.
The press release states James will be an essential component in the Coast Guard's ability to secure our nation's maritime domain and borders; save lives; interdict illicit traffic, alien smugglers, and illegal aliens; and protect ports, waterways, and natural resources by providing the American people a modern cutter to accomplish a variety of national security missions.
James will reportedly occupy a strategic position of strength that will enhance the ability to govern effectively, and fortify the national sovereignty of the U.S. and allied nations.
According to the news release, the Cutter James is expected to reach full operational capacity in the coming months. After settling into its homeport, it will complete crew and equipment qualifications, training and certifications.