Turkish Coast Guard To Receive 6 Damen Vessels

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A 3D-rendering of SAR Vessel 1906 by Damen Shipyards.

The Dutch shipyard, Damen has signed a contract with the International Organisation for Migration, for the supply of six, Search and Rescue (SAR) vessels for delivery in 2017. The boats are being financed by the European Union and will be operated by the Turkish Coast Guard, to support the refugees and migrants rescue operations, according to Defence Turkey Magazine.

The boats are designed for SAR operations in all-weather and can self right within seconds after a capsize or even a 360° roll. The 19 meter long boat, has a maximum speed of 31 knots and can carry up to 120 survivors.

The six boats will be built by Damen’s Turkish Shipyard in Antalya. The first two boats are scheduled for delivery in the first half of 2017 and the deliveries will be finished by the end of 2017.

These will be the first Damen built boats for Turkish Coast Guard. And these boats are going to be the first dedicated and purpose designed search and rescue vessels of Turkish Coast Guard. Damen was not a supplier for Turkish Coast Guard. The fact that the contract was financed by EU funds must have helped the Dutch company. Turkish Coast Guard usually prefers local shipyards and local designs.

Coast Guard Boat Collided With A Merchant Ship And Capsized

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TCSG-25 in her better days

Yesterday morning, during the morning rush hour, the Turkish Coast Guard vessel TCSG-25 collided with the Cook Island flag and Turkish owned bulk carrier M/V Tolunay on Bosphorus. The accident happened near the southern entrance of Bosphorus. The coast guard boat capsized after the collision. Both civilian and military rescue ships and other vessels were rushed to the scene. Unfortunately 3 members of crew Rıza Yücel, Yavuz Gökhan Şahin and Sinan Göktaş died while the remaining 3 were rescued.

The boat was tasked to escort the Russian Natya class mine hunter Valentin Pikul which was returning from her Syrian deployment.

If you wonder -like me- how a slow and large bulk carrier could collide with a very fast and agile boat the video below gives us some clue. For a reason, not clear, to me the coast guard boats stays motionless in front of the bulker. At this point it was not possible for the merchant ship to see the boat or to stop.

After the collision the merchant ship sailed till the northern entrance of Bosphorus to Büyükdere Bay. That Bay is the first place along the Bosphorus where a safe anchorage without disturbing the transit traffic is possible. Conveniently the headquarters of Istanbul Coast Guard Command is also located there.

Turkish Coast Guard Order Of Battle

A few weeks earlier I have compiled the order of battle of Turkish Navy here. This is the order of battle for Turkish Coast Guard:

Active Building Planned
Offshore patrol vessels 4
Large patrol craft 58
Small patrol craft 47
Control craft 85
Search and rescue craft 44
Helicopters 14
Planes 3

A detailed version of the above list:

Active Building Planned
Dost class off shore patrol vessels 4
Type 80 class 18
Sar 35 class 4
Sar 33 class 10
Türk class 4
Kaan 33 class 13
Kaan 29 class 9
Kaan 19 class 17
Kaan 15 class 18
Piket  class 2
Hector 42 class 10
Saget class 23
Various RHIP type craft 62
Search and rescue craft 44
AB-412 helicopters 14
CN-235 MPA planes 3

For more information about the future shipbuilding project for Turkish Navy and Turkish Coast Guard, here is an interesting read.

Future Shipbuilding Projects For Turkish Navy And Coast Guard

One of the most interesting presentations of the 7. Naval System Seminar was done by Undersecretariat for Defence Industries (UDI). The topic of it was the future shipbuilding projects.

The organisers of Naval System Seminar prepared a CD containing the presentations done during it. It is a useful thing if you want to reread any particular presentation(s) later at home.

However the UDI was either too lazy or too arrogant to send the presentation to the organisers so their presentation is not included in the CD. Therefore you have to be content with the table I have preapred from my notes and memory.

There are 20 acquisition projects related to Turkish navy and Turkish coast guard. Of these 20 project UDI is working on 13 of them.

Project End User Units RfP Notes
LCAC construction Navy 4
Preveze class submarines midlife modernisation Navy 4 In preparation
Underway replenishment tanker design Navy 1 Proceeding according to contract
Underway replenishment tanker construction Navy 1 In preparation
Conceptual design of Milden Navy To be determined No detailed information avalible
Floating dry dock construction Navy 1 In preparation
Hydrographical research vessel construction Navy 2 In preparation
Search And Rescue boat construction Coast Guard 20 (+ 24 optional) Before end of 2015
SAT boat construction Navy 2 In October 2015
Diver training boat construction Navy 2 September 2015
İstanbul class frigate construction Navy 4 In preparation
TF-2000 class air defence frigate construction Navy To be determined No detailed information avalible
Harbour tug construction Navy To be determined No detailed information avalible
Barbaros class mid-life modernisation Navy 4 Before end of 2015
Mine sweeper construction Navy To be determined No detailed information avalible
Sail training vessel construction Navy To be determined No detailed information avalible
New type LCT construction Navy To be determined No detailed information avalible
Ocean going tug construction Navy To be determined No detailed information avalible
 Turkish type fact attack craft construction Navy 4 In Q1 or Q2 of 2016
Fast patrol boat construction Navy 8 In November 2015
600 class coast guard vessel construction Coast Guard 8 In preparation

Russian Border Police Vessel Took Part In Turkish Led Exercise

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TCSG Dost was one of the Turkish participants to the Black Sea Hawk exercise.

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TCSG Güven served as the observation platform for guests and press.

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MAI-1105 Stefen Cel Mare was the Romanian participant to the exercise.

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Bulgaria was present with the patrol craft Obzor.

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The Russian Coast Guard participated with Rubin class patrol boat Zemchuk.

Turkish Coast Guard hosted the international exercise Black Sea Hawk, in Istanbul.

The two-day exercise started on 18 August 2015 and ended the next day.

The aim of this exercise was to increase and improve the workability and cooperation agreement between the Security Services of the Black Sea nations. Border Police and Coast Guard units from Bulgaria, Romania, Russia and Turkey have taken part in the exercise.

On 18 August 2015 there was an opening ceremony at the Coast Guard base in Istanbul. The sea phase of the exercise was held on 19 August 2015 off the Black Sea coast of Istanbul.
The participating units departed from the base early in the morning and performed joint training on repelling asymmetrical threads, medical evacuation, search and rescue, boarding a hijacked boat.

As host Turkish Coast Guard provided one plane, two helicopters, one special operations team, two security teams, 4 large vessels and two OPV’s: TCSG Dost and TCSG Güven.
Bulgaria took part with Damen Stan Patrol 4207 class boat 525 Obzor. Romanian Border Police was present with the Damen OPV 900 class MAI-1105 Stefen Cel Mare. And the Russian participant was Rubin class patrol ship 052 Zemchuk.

This exercise was the first of any joint activity between the Black Sea states since the annexation of Crimea by Russia. Notably Georgia and Ukraine did not participate in the exercise. Prior to the occupation of Crime, all Black Sea navies participated to the Black Sea For task force which was activated twice in a year. The BlackSeaFor initiated by Turkey has played an important role in increasing interaction among the Black Sea littoral states’ navies. The BlackSeaFor activations stopped with the annexation of Crime by Russia.
The Black Sea Hawk exercise is important as it is a sign that the ice is melting in the Black Sea and there is a political will to keep the interaction alive even in a low-level

Turkish Coast Guard Released Photos And Videos Of M/V Doğan Kartal

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Two Type 80 class Coast Guard vessels use their water canons to stop the vessel. Photo: Official Turkish Coast Guard photo.

 

Detailed information has been published by Turkish Coast Guard on their intervention on the freighter M/V Doğan Kartal on 12 March 2015.

The Coast Guard was informed that this ship loaded with refugees was sailing on Marmara Sea heading to the Çanakkale Strait. Coast Guard vessels reached the vessel near Şarköy but the ship refused to stop and tried to get away. It was only close to Gelibolu about 22 nautical miles south-west when M/V Doğan Kartal was stopped by firing upon it.

The released videos and photos show that it was a very dangerous operation. Various tactics including hosing pressured water into the bridge of M/V Doğan Kartal was tried before using the machine guns. The Type 80 class boats of Turkish Navy have one water cannon.

The videos and the photos show that every aspect of the operation was recorded by each boat.

This is the video posted on the Turkish Coast Guard website.

This is another video from the operation. This show the firing upon the ship.

The videos show that the passengers(!) of M/V Doğan Kartal were hostile to the Coast Guard crews. It is a very delicate act of force to stop a ship fully loaded with unfriendly people without hurting them at all. I think in the end it was a job well done by our coast guard.

Turkish Coast Guard Fires On M/V Doğan Kartal

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M/V Doğan Kartal, seen here in Bosphorus in 2009 photo. Photo: marinetraffic.com

On 12 March 2015, Turkish Coast Guard vessels chased the cargo ship M/V Doğan Kartal in the Çanakkale Strait and forces the ship to stop by firing on her engine room.

According to AIS data from marinetraffic.com website, the Turkish flagged 59 metre long ship has departed from Istanbul on 11 March 2015. It is not know to me where the hundreds of Syrian refugees have come on board.

When the ship has passing through the Çanakkale Strait on 12 March, Turkish Coast Guard hailed the ship and wanted to perform on board inspection. According to news reports the captain of the ship refused the VBSS inspection and did not stopped the ship. This started a chase of the M/V Doğan Kartal by coast guard vessels in Çanakkale Strait. The Strait was closed for transit traffic during the chase.

The stubborn ship was forced to stop when a coast guard vessel fired on her engine room which disabled the steering of the ship. It was not disclosed which boat fired with what kind of weapon. But the photo below shows at least two Type 80 class patrol boats with one 40 mm gun and two 12,7 mm machine guns. So it may be assumed that M/V Doğan Kartal was hit by a 40 mm projectile.

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M/V Doğan Kartal surrounded by Turkish Coast Guard vessels. Photo: DHA.

TCSG Yaşam Was Handed Over To Turkish Coast Guard

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SG-704 TCSG Yaşam was handed over to Turkish Coast Guard. Photo: RMK Marine

On 13 May 2014 RMK Marine finally handed over the last ship of Dost class OPV to Turkish Coast Guard.

The contract for the construction of 4 ships at RMK Marine Shipyard was signed on 16 January 2007. The keel of the first ship TCSG Dost was laid on 3 Mays 2008.

The design of the these ships are based on the Sirio class vessels produced by Italian Fincantieri. With this ships Turkish Coast Guard is able to perform its duties mainly search and rescue in sea state 5 and higher. These ships also have greater endurance than the coast guard cutters mainly used.

TCSG Güven Commissioned

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TCSG Dost, sister ship of TCSG Güven seen here during one of the builders trials.

The third off shore patrol vessel for the Turkish Coast Guard, SG-702 TCSG Güven was delivered today to the end user.

The design of the these ships are based on the Sirio class vessels produced by Italian Fincantieri. With the commissioning of these ships Coast Guard will be able to perform its duties mainly search and rescue in sea state 5 and higher.

The contract for the construction of 4 ships at RMK Marine Shipyard was signed on 16 January 2007. The keel of the first ship TCSG Dost was laid on 3 May 2008. She was launched on 9 June 2010 and was supposed to enter service last year.

These are the first large ships of the Turkish Coast Guard which never used any boat with a large displacement than 200 tons. Their primary task will be search and rescue missions on heavy seas and in bad weather when the smaller boats cannot operate. Secondary missions will be showing the flag, patrolling the seas and prevention of smuggling.

The first two ships SG-701 TCSG Dost and SG-703 TCSG Umut were commissioned in May 2013. The forth ship SG-704 TCSG Yaşam is scheduled to be commissioned in January 2015.

This ceremony was also a good opportunity for RMK Marine to polish its reputation and maybe to mend its tainted relations with the government.

Turkish Coast Guard Boats Get New Sensors

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I regret any misunderstanding that my previous post may have caused. I was just away temporary for a week-long holiday. That was all.

The photos you see above are the Coast Guard boats I have encountered during the week in various coastal towns.

The last photo of the SG-80 TCSG-80 is the most interesting of them all for me. As you can see below enlarged, Turkish Coast Guard has started to install a thermal imaging system to its boats. This is long-due addition to these boats sensors. This particular sensor suite look very similar to Aselsan’s Falconeye electro-optical sensor system. If this is the case than the system has thermal imaging system, a high performance day TV, target acquisition system and a laser pointer. Four boats of various classes have received this new sensor already. Read more of this post

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