USS Tornado

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USCGC Tornado (WPC-14) commissioning.jpg
USCGC Tornado (WPC 14)
United States
Ordered: 14 August 1997
Builder: Bollinger Shipyards, Lockport, Louisiana
Laid down: 25 August 1998
Launched: 7 June 1999
Acquired: 13 March 2000
Commissioned: 24 June 2000
Recommissioned: 6 December 2011 (USCG)
Decommissioned: 1 October 2004
Homeport: Jacksonville, Florida
Motto: Focused Precision
Status: in active service
  • USS Tornado PC-14 COA.png
  • USCGC Tornado WPC-14 COA.png
General characteristics
Class and type: Cyclone-class patrol ship
Displacement: 331 tons
Length: 179 ft (55 m)
Beam: 25 ft (7.6 m)
Draught: 7.5 ft (2.3 m)
Installed power: 2 CAT Marine SSDG
Propulsion: 4 Paxman Valenta Diesel Engines
Speed: 31 knots
Boats & landing
craft carried:
USCG Over the Horizon
Crew: 3 officers, 2 chiefs, 25 enlisted

USS Tornado (PC-14) is the fourteenth and last Cyclone class patrol (coastal) ship, notable for being the only ship in the class designed with shaping features for signature management. She was laid down by Bollinger Shipyards, Lockport, Louisiana 25 August 1998 and launched 7 June 1999. She was commissioned by the United States Navy 24 June 2000, decommissioned 1 October 2004 and transferred to the United States Coast Guard as USCGC Tornado (WPC-14).

Class's History[edit]

The primary mission of Cyclone Class was to serve as a platform for maritime special operations, including interdiction, escort, non-combatant evacuation, reconnaissance, operational deception, intelligence collection, and tactical swimmer operations. Her small size, stealthy construction, and high speed were tailored to performing long-range Special Operations Forces (SOF) insertion and extraction and other SOF support duties, in particular US Navy Seals.

The ship's operational capabilities were designed to meet the unique requirements of its Special Warfare missions. Cyclone Class was capable of accelerating from stop to 35 knots (65 km/h) in under three minutes, then move from full ahead to 15 knots (28 km/h) astern in 60 seconds. In high-speed, hard-over turns, the ship barely heeled as the automatic stabilizers engaged.

In the mid-1990s when the Special Operations Command rejected them as too big for commando missions, and the regular surface Navy dismissed them as too small for any of its missions. The Navy began looking for ways to phase out the Tornado and her sister ships.

Operational history 2000-2010[edit]

She was commissioned by the United States Navy 24 June 2000, decommissioned 1 October 2004 and transferred to the United States Coast Guard as USCGC Tornado (WPC-14).

Tornado in the Gulf of Mexico, December 2004

Operational history 2010-Present[edit]

Tornado was transferred back to the Navy on 30 September 2011, and is once again designated PC-14.[1][2]

As of January 2018, USS Tornado is the only Cyclone Class PC that still uses the MK38 25mm Mod 1 Gun System. She is also the only known ship left in the US Navy with Mod 1 Gun System. She is also the only ship in the class with signature management features. USS Tornado also holds the distinction, other than the USS Constitution, of being the last active US Navy warship with all crew served weapons.

In October of 2018, USS Tornado was a participant in the 2018 Baltimore Fleet Week. In May of 2019, USS Tornado participated in Fleet Week being docked at the United States Merchant Marine Academy.

On March 1st, 2019, USS Tornado deployed for patrol in the 4th Fleet AOR, her first deployment in over 5 years.;


  1. ^ "Patrol Coastal Ships – PC". U.S. Navy. 10 November 2011. Retrieved 18 June 2012.
  2. ^ "USS Tornado (PC 14)". U.S. Navy. Retrieved 18 June 2012.

External links[edit]