The U.S. Navy – Cyclone Class Patrol Boat may be small at approximately 175 feet, but with an armament which includes two Mk38 chain guns, two Mk19 automatic grenade launchers, twin .50 caliber machine guns, as well as six Stinger missiles… she packs a punch.
With a crew of 30 sailors, the USS Firebolt (PC-10) is tasked with coastal patrol and interdiction surveillance in the Persian Gulf.
On 24 April 2004, Firebolt’s rigid-hulled inflatable boat attempted a boarding operation on a dhow (sailboat) that was approaching the Khawr Al Amaya Oil Terminal in Iraq. As the boarding team pulled alongside the dhow, it exploded in an apparent suicide bombing. Two Sailors and one Coast Guardsman were killed when the inflatable flipped over, dumping her crew into the water.
Film Credit: PO2 Danielle Brandt