The United States’ Most Experienced Aluminum-Hulled, Jet-Propulsion Ship Operator
Seaward Services has operated, maintained, and managed high-speed aluminum vessels for over twenty years. In 2001, Seaward Services began operating the WestPac Express in Okinawa, Japan in support of IIIMEF. A high-speed, aluminum vessel had never been used for military operations at that point and Seaward was tasked to ensure proof-of concept. In only a few short years, Seaward’s performance on the vessel cemented the tremendous potential of high-speed craft in military applications and paved the way for their widespread adoption into the US fleet.
After Seaward demonstrated the viability of high-speed shipping in the US fleet, MSC purchased the MV Huakai and Alakai. In 2013, MSC awarded Seaward with the prime contract to oversee the ship’s husbandry in ROS and eventually the Huakai’s conversion project in Charleston, SC into the troop transport vessel, the USNS Guam. When the project completed in 2017, Seaward delivered the vessel from Norfolk, VA to Okinawa, Japan where it replaced the WestPac Express. Since that time, the USNS Guam has served as a significant maritime feature in the Far East and for III MEF.
To date, the US Navy and MSC has also built and added a whole new fleet of high-speed, aluminum-hulled ships based on Seaward Services’ proof-of-concept. Additionally, Seaward Services has crewed, maintained, and operated the HSV Alakai for Bay Ferries Unlimited since 2016. The vessel serves as a high-speed, passenger ferry that transits daily in the summer between Bar Harbor, Maine and Yarmouth, Nova Scotia. In 2021 alone, the HSV Alakai transported 36,000 passengers and 15,000 vehicles. All officers on Seaward’s high-speed craft must undergo a proprietary, USCG-approved type-rating program. The rigorous curriculum ensures that mariners satisfy the unique navigation and engineering requirements for any high-speed craft.
Through this type-rating program Seaward has trained and maintained an impressive roster of highly specialized mariners who demonstrate a deep familiarity with the unique requirements of navigating, maintaining, and operating high-speed platforms. Additionally, Seaward’s experienced and seasoned shoreside staff compliments shipside operations to address the complex requirements required for the proper operation and maintenance of high-speed vessels. Our crews undergo a rigorous, proprietary training program to prepare for the unique demands and skills necessary to operate these vessels. No other American shipping company has a USCG approved training program as robust and trusted as Seaward Services.
Sea Trials & Autonomous Vessels
Our partnership with Austal, the leading high-speed ship builder in the USA, has helped launch an aluminum-hulled revolution in the US shipping fleet. MSC and the US Navy have also noticeably embraced the potential of high-speed craft and launched the EPF and LCS class vessels. In partnership with Austal, Seaward has provided crew for every EPF and LCS vessel built in the US. Our expertise ensures that vessels meet the highest standards and enter into the fleet prepared for service.
For Seaward, high-speed has only revealed a fraction of its potential. Seaward is dedicated to bringing this highly adaptable, and efficient platform to a diverse section of the industry through relentless improvement and constant dedication.