The ALERT is the last 210-foot medium endurance cutter to have been constructed. The keel was laid on January 5, 1968 at the Coast Guard Yard in Curtis Bay, Maryland, and she was commissioned on Coast Guard Day, August 4, 1969. ALERT derives her name from the early 19th century sailing ship ALERT, which served in the Revenue Cutter Service under George Washington. ALERT has a long and distinguished record of Coast Guard service.
ALERT has a designed endurance of approximately 60 days and a cruising range of 5,000 miles at a speed of 15 knots. Direct pilothouse control of her two 2,500 horsepower engines, together with variable pitch twin screws, allows for great control and maneuverability. ALERT carries two small boats that are used for boardings and search and rescue while on the high seas as well as inport. She can also accommodate a Coast Guard HH-65 Dolphin, which offers increased effectiveness as a search and rescue and law enforcement asset.