Navy Orders Four New LCU 1700 Utility Landing Craft from Swiftships
April 3, 2020
ARLINGTON, Va. — The U.S. Navy has ordered four more of its new utility landing craft (LCU) for its amphibious warfare forces.
Naval Sea Systems Command awarded Swiftships of Morgan City, Louisiana, a $50.1 million modification to a previously-awarded contract “to exercise an option for the construction of four Landing Craft Utility (LCU) transportation boats (1703 through 1706),” the Defense Department said in an April 2 announcement. Delivery is expected by October 2022. The funds will come from the fiscal 2020 budget.
In February 2019, the Navy ordered LCU 1701 and 1702 under a $26.7 million contract modification. The craft will follow the prototype of the LCU 1700 class. Delivery is expected by May 2021.
“The LCU 1700 class will recapitalize the LCU 1610 capabilities and have a design life of 30 years,” the contract announcement said. “LCU 1700 craft will be a highly reliable and fuel-efficient heavy-lift platform whose capability will be complementary to the faster air cushion landing craft, which have a significantly shorter range, smaller payload capacity, no habitability and operating hour limitations.”
The Navy’s amphibious warfare ships equipped with well decks routinely deploy with LCUs embarked. The Navy plans to procure a total of 32 LCU 1700 craft.