SEAFORCE has provided the Ice rated special purpose vessel ACV Ocean Protector to Australian Customs and Border Protection for service as a Southern Ocean Maritime Patrol and Response Capability ship. It was acquired in 2010 to replace the MV Oceanic Viking.
The ship was originally built in 2007 as a Multipurpose Offshore Support Vessel for the Norwegian shipping company DOF ASA. It was originally named MV Geo Bergen and renamed MV Skandi Bergen on 19 July, 2007. It was based in Bergen, Norway as project vessel for DOF Subsea Norway.
It was chartered to the Australian Customs and Border Protection Service through DMAA SEAFORCE Pty Ltd in 2010. It was modified by Forgacs Engineering in Newcastle, New South Wales and renamed ACV (Australian Customs Vessel) Ocean Protector.
The modifications included the addition of two deck-mounted .50 Caliber Machine Guns, a reconfigured helicopter platform, secure communications, a medical/surgical facility (staffed by a doctor from the Australian Antarctic Division), FLIR systems and “Austere accommodation for up to 120 potential transportee’s”. It entered Australian Customs Service in September, 2010.
It is normally tasked to patrol Australia’s exclusive economic zone in the Southern Ocean for up to 220 days per year and the Indian Ocean for up to 80 days per year