MV Westpac Express (HSV-4676)

MV Westpac Express (HSV-4676)

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MV Westpac Express (HSV-4676)

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The MV Westpac Express (HSV-4676) is a high-speed catamaran built in 2001 by Austal Ltd. of Henderson, Western Australia. Chartered for the Marine Corps Logistics Prepositioning Ship Program by Military Sealift Command (MSC), the ship provided extensive logistics support to "Exercise Cobra Gold 2002". Cobra Gold 2002 is the 21st U.S. Pacific Command exercise conducted in Thailand demonstrating the ability of U.S. forces to deploy rapidly and conduct joint-combined operations with the Thai and Singapore Armed Forces. Austal Hull 130 Chartering, LLC of Mobile, Alabama was awarded a $13,395,944 firm-fixed-priced contract commencing in February 2007, with four one-year additional options to September 2011.

With a design based on the Westpac Express, Austal USA won the bidding for the Joint High Speed Vessel in November 2008 and will build one ship with an option for nine more. The new vessel will have an increased top speed of at least 35 and up to 45 kts and up to ten ships will eventually be used by the United States Navy, the United States Marine Corps and the United States Coast Guard.Jane's Defense Weekly, 2008-11-19, p. 5

In March 2011, the Westpac Express was deployed as part of the US response to the Japanese earthquake and tsunami.

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