* Original Article – Must Quote Barbados Free Press *
HMBS Trident To Be Replaced – Chinese Likely Source
The Government of Barbados has been engaged in serious negotiations with Communist China for a replacement for the aging Barbados Coast Guard Patrol Vessel, HMBS Trident, a confidential source informs Barbados Free Press.
“The Trident’s engines are finished, especially the port which has shaft problems, but the vessel is generally EOL (end of life) all round” said BFP’s source over bottle of beer last week.
“Chinese chaps were out inspecting the vessel at least twice earlier in the year and they went for a cruise in May…”
Our source has no idea of what the Chinese are asking Barbados for in the way of concessions or payments as he/she is not privy to the political side of the issue.
Command Officers Asked For Names Of Core Crew
The source states that the Command Officers have been asked to submit a list of names for a “core training crew” that would presumeably become more closely involved with taking on a new patrol vessel – perhaps even undergoing training in China and then delivering the vessel to Barbados.
How urgent is the need for a replacement?
Says BFP’s source: “She (HMBS Trident) has been under RPM restrictions since last January. Given the normal lead time of several years, a new replacement will not appear overnight. There is a chance that the Chinese will offer to de-commission an existing (ie: used) coastal patrol vessel, which would be quite an acceptable proposal at this stage.”
BFP Photo by Shona: HMBS Trident Cranks Up After Time In Harbour