PH Navy prefers US Cyclone patrol boats over Hamilton-class cutters

PH Navy prefers US Cyclone patrol boats over Hamilton-class cutters



The Philippine Navy (PN) has chosen the newly-decommissioned Cylone class patrol vessels than acquire another Hamilton-class cutter from the United States.

This was explained by Vice Adm. Giovanni Carlo Bacordo, as they intend this cyclone class to replace PN’s World War II legacy ships which was recently decommissioned.

Currently the PN has three Hamilton-class cutters which are now called the Del Pilar-class offshore patrol vessels.

(photo credit to owner)

These ships are the BRP Gregorio Del Pilar (PS-15) which was acquired in 2011, BRP Ramon Alcaraz (PS-16) in 2013; and BRP Andres Bonifacio (PS-17) in 2017.

“We decommissioned several World War II vessels, that is part of Secretary of National Defense’s (Delfin Lorenzana) guidance, that is also part of my guidance in order to modernize the mindset of the Navy, So we need platforms like the Cyclone-class patrol vessels (to replace them),” he added.

Bacordo said it is likely that the US Navy will give a positive response to the PN’s request to acquire the newly-retired Cyclone-class patrol vessels.

“Yes, because we have monitored that several of the Cyclone-class patrol vessels (they have retired) are just mothballed,” he added.

The PN is eyeing 5 additional Cyclone units, but it will still depend on the assessment of the Joint Visual Inspection (JVI) team that will be checking the vessels, Bacordo said.

“It also depends on the JVI. Even if, let’s say that there are 10 ships available, if our team would assess that some of the vessels would be too expensive to maintain, we will only get the best available units,” he added.

Also, the PN chief said they will request their US counterpart to retain the armaments of these ships if possible.

Once transferred, these vessels will be used to beef up the the PN’s Littoral Combat Force.

“We have manifested our interest with JUSMAG (Joint US Military Assistance Group) and US INDOPACOM (Indo-Pacific Command),” Bacordo earlier said.

These vessels weigh around 328.5 long tons and have a length of 179 feet, a beam of 25 feet, and a draft of 7.5 feet. Their maximum speed is placed at 35 knots and they have a range of between 2,000 to 2,500 nautical miles.

Cyclone-class patrol vessels are armed with two 25mm autocannons and several high-powered machine guns.


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Report from PNA


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