Article Category: U.S. Coast Guard News

Coast Guard Cutter Harriet Lane Returns Home After Operation Blue Pacific Patrol

Coast Guard Cutter Harriet Lane Returns Home After Operation Blue Pacific Patrol

The U.S. Coast Guard cutter Harriet Lane returned to its Pearl Harbor homeport on April 9 after the inaugural Operation Blue Pacific patrol in Oceania. During the 70 plus-day deployment, the Harriet Lane and crew partnered with allies and several Pacific Island countries from January to April, including the countries of Samoa, Fiji, Vanuatu, Australia, Papua New Guinea, Nauru and Marshall Islands. The focus, according to the Coast Gard, was on advising and sharing best practices, along with bolstering its’ partners’ capabilities to promote and model good maritime governance in the region. The Harriet Lane expanded U.S. Coast Guard presence in Oceania alongside Pacific Island countries exercising bilateral maritime law enforcement agreements with shiprider provisions to strengthen mari...
U.S., Samoa Renew Pacific Maritime Law Enforcement Agreement

U.S., Samoa Renew Pacific Maritime Law Enforcement Agreement

The United States and the Independent State of Samoa on April 5 signed an addendum to the existing 2012 Bilateral Agreement for the continuation and expansion of operational cooperation to suppress illicit transnational maritime activity. “In partnership with Samoa, the United States stands committed to safeguarding and ensuring security of Samoa’s economic exclusive zone, by preserving its marine resources, environment, promoting sustainable development for future generations” U.S. Embassy Apia, Samoa Charge d’Affaires, Noriko Horiuchi, said. The addendum to the existing Bilateral Agreement signed by the Coast Guard and Samoa signed allows for enhanced maritime law enforcement operations, maritime domain awareness and assists with implementation of integrated operations between the U....
USCG Sector Puget Sound Launches Effort to Curb Vessel Traffic’s Impact on Whales

USCG Sector Puget Sound Launches Effort to Curb Vessel Traffic’s Impact on Whales

The U.S. Coast Guard Sector Puget Sound is engaging in a four-year pilot program that is expected to help minimize the vessel traffic impact on endangered whales in the Salish Sea, the agency announced Feb. 21. Hosted in the Puget Sound Vessel Traffic Service (VTS), the program allows for the Coast Guard to get whale sighting reports from mariners and give close to real-time information on whale locations to mariners through a whale report alert system, according to the Guard. The Coast Guard said that it plans to work closely with international, federal, tribal and state entities as well as nongovernmental organizations. “The new cetacean desk aligns with our regional goals to help endangered whales and ships share the waters of the Salish Sea,” Rachel Aronson, a program director wit...
Executive Order Expands Coast Guard’s Authority to Address Maritime Cyber Threats On Feb. 21, President Biden signed an executive order amending regulations relating to the safeguarding of U.S. vessels, harbors, ports and waterfront facilities, updating the Code of Federal Regulations to explicitly address cyber threats. “This executive order ensures Coast Guard authorities are aligned with emerging cybersecurity threats, and reflects the commitment of the Biden administration, the Department of Homeland Security and the U.S. Coast Guard to safeguard maritime critical infrastructure,” Coast Guard Assistant Commandant for Prevention Policy Rear Admiral Wayne Arguin said. Section 70051 of title 46, United States Code, commonly referred to as the Magnuson Act, authorizes the President to i...
Coast Guard, Good Samaritans Rescue 4 From Capsized F/V South of Kodiak

Coast Guard, Good Samaritans Rescue 4 From Capsized F/V South of Kodiak

The Coast Guard and good Samaritans rescued four people after their vessel capsized about two nautical miles northeast of Chiniak Island, Alaska in January. Coast Guard Sector Anchorage watchstanders said that they received a report over VHF channel 16 at about 4:31 p.m. Jan. 21 from the crew of Alaska Rose, a 46-foot fishing vessel, stating that they were taking on water. An urgent marine information broadcast was issued on VHF channel 16 and a Coast Guard Air Station Kodiak MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter aircrew deployed. The helicopter aircrew arrived on scene at about 4:56 p.m. and located one person on the overturned vessel, hoisting and transferring the individual to Air Station Kodiak, where local EMS waited, the Guard said in a Jan 22 news release. The crew of Good Samaritan vessel...
Coast Guard Tows Disabled Fishing Vessel to Adak, Alaska

Coast Guard Tows Disabled Fishing Vessel to Adak, Alaska

The Coast Guard cutter Alex Haley towed a disabled fishing vessel with eight people aboard to Adak, Alaska on New Year’s Day, according to a Jan. 3 news release. The Haley towed the 127-foot fishing vessel Aleutian No. 1 into Adak and transferred it to the f/v Erla-N. The Erla-N then completed towing the disabled vessel, where it was moored at the pier with the help of Alex Haley’s cutter boats. Watchstanders in the Coast Guard 17th District command center initially received notification from the master of Aleutian No. 1 at 5:57 a.m., reporting the vessel’s crew had fouled its prop, were unable to conduct repairs, and were drifting about north of Amchitka Island, 575 miles southwest of Dutch Harbor. The Alex Haley was recalled from a mid-patrol break and transited 575 miles in the Bei...
Polar Star Heads South from Seattle for Antarctica’s Operation Deep Freeze

Polar Star Heads South from Seattle for Antarctica’s Operation Deep Freeze

For the 27th year running, the U.S. Coast Guard cutter Polar Star is enroute to Antarctica to break a navigable channel through ice for Operation Deep Freeze (ODF). The vessel departed Nov. 15. It’s a task described by Polar Star Commanding Officer Capt. Keith Ropella as a unique, important mission that requires year-round effort from crew to prepare the now 47-year-old vessel for the 20,000 nautical mile round trip, where the Polar Star will be subject to extreme environmental conditions. The Coast Guard said that it’s recapitalizing its polar icebreaker fleet to ensure continued access to the polar regions and to protect the country’s economic, environmental and national security interests. To date, the Polar Star has completed the third of five planned phases of the service life ext...
USCG Cutter Kimball Returns  to Honolulu After 85-Day IUU Patrol

USCG Cutter Kimball Returns to Honolulu After 85-Day IUU Patrol

The Coast Guard cutter Kimball returned to its homeport of Honolulu on Nov. 2, having completed an 85-day patrol covering 14,000 nautical miles from the Hawaiian Islands north to the Arctic Circle. While at sea, the vessel’s crew provided search-and rescue coverage and conducted living marine resources (LMR) and Illegal Unreported and Unregulated (IUU) fishing operations. They also responded to wildfires on the Hawaiian island of Maui. On the evening of Aug. 8, while en route to the Aleutian Islands, the cutter received a report of people in the water attempting to escape a raging wildfire on Maui. The cutter shifted to tactical control of Sector Honolulu and altered course to support the mass search and rescue.  Arriving on scene within hours, Kimball became the on-scene commander of...

Coast Guard Responds to Medical Emergency Aboard Fishing Vessel Near San Diego

Coast Guard Sector San Diego personnel on Oct. 12 responded to a medical emergency aboard a charter fishing vessel about 55 miles west of Point Loma. At about 1 p.m. on the above date, Coast Guard Sector San Diego watchstanders received a distress call from the charter fishing vessel Legend, reporting a medical emergency. A 79-year-old male passenger lost consciousness and fell, which was taken by the Coast Guard to be signs of a heart attack. Guard personnel responding to the emergency determined that the passenger required a higher level of medical care as soon as possible, so in response, Coast Guard Air Station San Diego launched an MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew. The helicopter crew arrived on scene, successfully hoisted the patient, and then transported him to Scripps Memorial Hosp...

Coast Guard Establishes IUU Fishing, Environmental Response Centers in Hawaii

The U.S. Coast Guard Marine Environmental Response Regional Activities Center (MER RAC) and the Illegal Unreported Unregulated Fisheries Center of Expertise (IUUF COE) were established during an Oct. 11 ceremony on Ford Island, Hawaii. Coast Guard Pacific Area Commander Vice Adm. Andrew Tiongson and Rear Adm. Jo-Ann Burdian, the Guard’s Assistant Commandant for Response Policy, presided over the ceremony. The IUUF COE is to  serve as the international engagements arm for combatting illegal fishing activities in the Indo-Pacific, and further promote regional coordination to combat IUUF and better equip partner nations. “The intent of the IUUF COE is to increase maritime domain awareness, exchange valuable information, increase interoperability, and share best practices related to IUUF ac...