U.S. Coast Guard News

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Inside the U.S. Coast Guard's Anti-Drug Boarding Teams

By U.S. Coast Guard News 2019-05-10 16:27:01

 [By Chief Petty Officer John Masson] For Petty Officer 3rd Class Denim Kurtis, law enforcement is a family affair. His mother is a deputy sheriff and his father-in-law is an investigator for the San Francisco district attorney’s office. So when Kurtis felt the call to serve his country, the Coast Guard’s maritime enforcement specialty was a natural fit. He initially joined as a reservist at a San Francisco-based port security unit before integrating into the active duty force almost three years ago. Today the...

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The U.S. Coast Guard's Response to Hurricane Florence

By U.S. Coast Guard News 2019-05-03 23:30:27

[By Lt. Cmdr. Ace Castle] On Friday, Sept. 14, 2018, at 7:15 a.m., Hurricane Florence made landfall at Wrightsville Beach, North Carolina, with sustained winds of 90 mph. However, the flooding associated with Florence would prove more devastating than just hurricane-force winds. Hurricane Florence dropped more than 33 inches of rain in portions of North Carolina, causing widespread destruction that people could never have imagined. Florence created more challenges for Coast Guard responders than the usual storm response. With the...

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Adm. Fagan: USCG is Increasing its Arctic Capabilities

By U.S. Coast Guard News 2019-04-30 10:51:45

[By Senior Chief NyxoLyno Cangemi] Last Friday, the U.S. Coast Guard’s Pacific Area commander discussed the service’s new Arctic Strategic Outlook, Polar Security Cutters and innovation efforts to improve maritime domain awareness in the high latitudes during the Arctic Encounter Symposium in Seattle. “The tyranny of distance and the harsh Arctic climate pose significant challenges to agencies charged with providing maritime safety and security to all Americans, including the hundreds of villages and thousands of seasonal workers in the U.S. Arctic,"...

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Personal Histories from the Coast Guard's Hurricane Maria Response

By U.S. Coast Guard News 2019-04-19 10:50:19

[By J. Edwin Nieves, M.D., Coast Guard Auxiliary] In 2018, the Coast Guard Historian’s Office began documenting the eyewitness accounts of Coast Guard members following the disastrous 2017 hurricane season. During the season, the Coast Guard responded to three massive tropical events affecting central Texas, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands of St. Thomas, St. Croix and St. John. Separated by thousands of miles, each one of these areas has unique geographic and climate operating conditions. Of these, Hurricane Maria, which hit...

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U.S. Coast Guard Deploys Drones to Inspect Aids to Navigation

By U.S. Coast Guard News 2019-04-17 12:25:12

In a first, U.S. Coast Guard Civil Engineering Unit Providence, Rhode Island, is using a drone to inspect the construction of new fixed Aids to Navigation (ATON) structures. Lt. Kieron D. McCarthy conducted the inspections by piloting the Unmanned Aerial System (UAS) from a small boat assigned to the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Bollard. Hand launching the drone from the 16-foot boat, the CEU inspected and approved the steel tower structures that serve as fixed channel markers at Housatonic River,...

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USCG: Report BWTS Breakdowns Early to Avoid Penalties

By U.S. Coast Guard News 2019-04-08 18:11:25

During the CMA 2019 conference, Rear Adm. John Nadeau, the U.S. Coast Guard assistant commandant for prevention policy, spoke with leaders from the International Association of Independent Oil Tankers (INTERTANKO) about ballast water management compliance.  Coast Guard marine inspectors performed 8,140 ballast water management compliance exams in 2018. Of those, at least 119 resulted in deficiencies, which suggests a significant decrease in deficiencies compared to 2017. Compliance is improving, but Nadeau explained that some of this reduction is likely attributable to a change...

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The Origins of the Search and Rescue Helicopter

By U.S. Coast Guard News 2019-03-01 10:07:51

[By Beth L. Crumley, U.S. Coast Guard Assistant Historian] Just over 75 years ago, Lt. Cmdr. Frank A. Erickson flew the first helicopter rescue mission in history, ushering in a new era in search and rescue techniques. Born in Portland, Oregon, Erickson served in the Navy before enlisting in the U.S. Coast Guard. He received an appointment to the Coast Guard Academy and was commissioned in 1931. While at the Academy, Erickson developed a passionate interest in the techniques of search...

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Eyes in the Sky: Hunting Smugglers in All Weather

By U.S. Coast Guard News 2019-02-15 17:03:31

It was completely dark in the middle of the Caribbean Sea on the evening of October 3, 2018. Dense bands of cloud shrouded the moon, obscuring all light. Storms intermittently rumbled, dampening the darkness with sheets of rain. Five thousand feet above the sea, a large white airplane sliced through the gloom, its telltale orange stripe and Coast Guard shield obscured by the shadows. Pilots and crew members inside the HC-130 Hercules airplane did not mind the obscurity; in fact,...

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Cleaning Up After Hurricane Michael

By U.S. Coast Guard News 2019-02-01 10:46:22

[By PO2 Paul Klug] The Florida Panhandle experienced pure devastation from Hurricane Michael, Oct. 10, 2018. It ripped through coastal towns and made its way inland, driving people from their homes and leaving thousands without power and fresh water. Relief efforts from federal and state agencies, as well as local and out-of-state volunteers, responded to help displaced survivors. After the hurricane, the spotlight shifted away from Northwestern Florida. Those not affected went on with their lives, news outlets found...

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USCG: 700 False EPIRB Alerts in 2018

By U.S. Coast Guard News 2018-12-21 09:23:32

After responding to over 700 false alerts in 2018, the Coast Guard is urging anyone with an emergency position indicating radio beacon to properly register their device. An EPIRB is a device that transmits a distress signal to a satellite system called Cospas-Sarsat. The satellites relay the signal to a network of ground units and ultimately to the Coast Guard and other emergency responders. Owners of commercial fishing vessels, uninspected passenger vessels that carry six or more people, and uninspected...

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