SAFE Boats to reopen Tacoma facility

MKVI vessl operated by a US Navy unit.
MKVI vessl operated by a US Navy unit (Source: Wikimedia Commons).

The shipbuilder SAFE Boats International recently announced that they are reopening a manufacturing facility in Tacoma, Wash.

By Michael McGrady, Maritime Direct Americas & Pacific Correspondent

TACOMA — SAFE Boats will reopen its shipyard operation at the Port of Tacoma to support a US Navy contract. The News Tribune wire service, via KIRO 7 in Seattle, reports that the manufacturing operation will add 75 new maritime jobs thanks tied to a portion of a $100-million contract granted by the Navy for various weapons deals between the Department of Defense and the Ukrainian military.

“Ukraine will utilize the vessels to better defend its territorial waters and protect other maritime interests,” said the Defense Security Cooperation Agency in a news release about the reported deal. The Navy contracted with SAFE Boats, based in Bremerton, Wash., to build 16 Mark VI boats. Mark VI patrol boats are a specialized class of vessels typically used exclusively by the United States Navy.

However, the 16 boats to be built by SAFE Boats International will be built for the US Navy. They will be transferred to the government of Ukraine through the Defense Security Cooperation Agency. Mark VI is an 85-foot patrol boat, reports Marine Link.

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