Ex-otago

INFORMATION

HMNZS Otago (P148) is a Protector class off-shore patrol vessel in service with the Royal New Zealand Navy. The development of the OPV design based on an Irish Naval Service OPV class was very contentious with the RNZN arguing for the need for a limited combat suite for effective training and patrol work with a 57mm-76mm light frigate gun and associated fire control and radar and electronic warfare systems at least compatible with current 2nd light RN OPVs while the government and Cabinet preference was to use the space and extra finance available to incorporate ice strengthening and provision of extra coastal patrol vessels. The RNZN view was that adding ice strengthening was unnecessary for Southern Ocean patrol as distinct from operation in the Ross sea and the extra weight and complexity would stress and shorten the life of the hulls from 25 to 15 years She was launched in 2006 but suffered from problems during construction and was not commissioned until 2010, two years later than planned. Soon after commissioning Otago encountered problems with both her engines which delayed her arrival at her home port of Port Chalmers. She has served on several lengthy patrols of the Antarctic, though she lacks the capability to operate in heavier levels of ice-coverage which has led to the cancellation of at least one planned operation.

ARTIST PHOTO

ALBUMS