Coast Guard inspectors from Anchorage say that during a two-week deployment to Bristol Bay in mid-June, they completed 351 dockside exams and issued 276 safety decals for fishing vessels in communities throughout the region.
Examiners said the exams focused on safety and addressed items such as flares, charts, navigational signals, fire extinguishers, emergency position indicating radio beacons and serviceability of immersion suits. Every vessel that passed the exam earned a decal, according to the USCG.
From June 13 through June 24 they also removed 117 immersion suits from service because they were not serviceable. Most vessel owners replaced the unserviceable suits with new ones, the Coast Guard said.
Coast Guard Chief Petty Officer David Schaeffer, fishing vessel safety examiner from Sector Anchorage, said the service is provided to promote safety and present loss of life at sea for the fishing fleet.
“This is a preventative measure to ensure vessels have necessary life-saving equipment on board,” he explained. “They have one of the most dangerous jobs in the country, so our job is to make sure they’re prepared before heading out to sea.”