Customs gets new patrol boat
The Jamaica Customs Agency's (JCA) fleet of patrol boats has increased to two, following the acquisition of a 27-foot Boston Whaler vessel.
The boat, named the 'Skip McLaughlin', was procured from the Jamaica Constabulary Force's (JCF) Marine Division under a partnership between the agencies.
It joins the 'Skip Jack', also acquired from the JCF, which the agency has been utilising for border patrols and marine surveillance within the island's territorial waters over the past four years.
The 'Skip McLaughlin', which was commissioned during a brief ceremony at the marine police headquarters at Newport East on Tuesday, was refurbished at a cost of approximately $800,000, and is equipped with twin 250-horsepower outboard engines, navigational devices and has a top-end speed of 40 knots.
It is able to patrol up to six miles from Jamaica's coastline and can transport a maximum of 12 persons.
The vessel better positions the JCA to support the operations of the marine police and Jamaica Defence Force (JDF) Coast Guard.
Finance and Public Service Minister, the Honourable Audley Shaw, in his address at the commissioning ceremony, disclosed plans to acquire additional aircrafts and boats for the JDF over the next several months to further boost its capacity to "adequately patrol our borders around the country".