French naval ship FNS L’ADROIT visits Cape Town
and Simon’s Town
Article and photos by Shanton Claude Prins
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The French Navy High Sea
Patrol vessel, FNS L’ADROIT visited Cape Town from 5-9
September 2012, and Simon’s Town from 9-11 September
2012 to conduct a routine port call. The purpose of the
visit is to maintain and enhance relations between the
two navies and the local South African community. They
are also here to strengthen the partnership between
Direction des Construction Navales (DCNS) and Nautic
South Africa to share lessons learnt about piracy
operations and related Offshore Patrol Vessels missions
on a navy to navy basis.
FNS L'ADROIT entering Cape Town Harbour
L’ADROIT provides a series of
innovative and unrivalled capabilities designed
specifically for maritime security and safety missions.
This new generation vessel carries all the prevention
and action assets necessary for surveillance and
policing tasks at sea; fast boats for commandos, assault
and transport helicopters, unmanned surveillance
vehicles, electronic warfare interceptors, shell plating
doors, secure communication facilities and command aids
are all on board.
Officer Commanding, Captain Loic Guyot of the FNS L'
The ship can also be equipped
with powerful means of action. It includes full
provision for unmanned surveillance vehicles (UAVs) and
a 5 to 10 ton helicopter. The OPV is designed to possibly
receive any range of guns up to the remote controlled
76mm. According the nature of the ship's missions, navies
are free to decide which kind of weapons would best fit.
On the 21st of October 2011
the L’ADROIT, under ownership of DCNS, was officially
made available to the French Navy under the command of
Captain Loïc Guyot so he could evaluate the ship and its
systems on operational missions during the next three
years. Two French navy crews will be rotating every four
months to operate approximately 220 days a year at sea.
As a response to piracy and
to perform its other maritime security missions, the
ship comprises a specific architecture. With an
overall length of 87 meters and breadth of 13 meters, a
range of 8000 nautical miles and a top speed of 21 knots
and 32 crew members onboard.