There’s no place like Nome

Coast Guard Cutter Healy breaks ice near the city of Nome, Alaska Jan. 14. Healy is breaking ice near Nome to assist the Russian tanker Renda move into final position for offloading nearly 1.3 million gallons of petroleum products to the city.  U.S. Coast Guard photo by Chief Petty Officer Kip Wadlow.

Coast Guard Cutter Healy breaks ice near the city of Nome, Alaska Jan. 14. Healy is breaking ice near Nome to assist the Russian tanker Renda move into final position for offloading nearly 1.3 million gallons of petroleum products to the city. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Chief Petty Officer Kip Wadlow.

Approximately 3,500 Nome residents await the arrival of the 370-foot Russian tanker Renda. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class Charly Hengen.

Approximately 3,500 Nome residents await the arrival of the 370-foot Russian tanker Renda. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class Charly Hengen.

Due to the tireless work of crews aboard Coast Guard Cutter Healy and tanker vessel Renda, the final leg of a mission to deliver fuel to the town of Nome is now underway.

Icebreaker Healy set out from Dutch Harbor Jan. 3, to clear a path for the tanker through more than 300 miles of ice, and Renda finally arrived just offshore of Nome Saturday evening.

Renda is currently moored off Nome’s harbor and ground crews in Alaska are now building a path more than a half-mile long on the Bering Sea ice to lay a hose for the fuel transfer.

“This is a huge milestone having both ships safely moored in Nome. There has been tremendous teamwork taking place on the ground in Nome as well as on the sea between the Healy and the Renda to safely offload this fuel,” said Jason Evans of Sitnasuak Native Corporation.

Crews will have to wait up to 12 hours after the arrival of the ships to ensure that all the broken and disturbed ice has refrozen allowing safe operations to take place around the ships.

Healy and crew have been escorting and breaking ice for Renda since Jan. 3, 2012. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class Charly Hengen.

Healy and crew have been escorting and breaking ice for Renda since Jan. 3, 2012. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class Charly Hengen.

Once all equipment for the fuel delivery is in place, the fuel transfer operations from Renda will commence during daylight hours after a joint Coast Guard and State of Alaska overview.

“This has been and continues to be a highly orchestrated effort between all stakeholders to ensure mission success” said Rear Adm. Thomas Ostebo, 17th Coast Guard District commander.

“As we have done for more than 220 years, the Coast Guard is dedicated to ensuring the safe and secure transfer of maritime commerce. The Healy, our nation’s only operating polar ice breaker, and its crew are committed to upholding our long history of service to the residents of Alaska,” added Ostebo.

Stick with us here at Compass as we provide you updates as they come on Healy and Renda’s mission to Nome.

Coast Guard Cutter Healy breaks ice as the sun begins to set in the Nome harbor Jan. 13. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class Charly Hengen.

Coast Guard Cutter Healy breaks ice as the sun begins to set in the Nome harbor Jan. 13. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class Charly Hengen.

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