Below Zero Kick Off – Coast Guard’s Cold Weather Operations

January and February are the most common coldest months throughout the nation. It’s a time when many Coast Guard units participate in domestic icebreaking and ice rescues. During this month-long campaign, we want to stress cold weather safety for those who may be near water or ice with the help of our National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and International Ice Patrol partners as well as various Coast Guard units.


Honor, Respect, Devotion to Duty: Cmdr. Zeita Merchant

Cmdr. Zeita Merchant assumed the duties of the commanding officer of Marine Safety Unit Chicago in July and became the first African-American female in the Coast Guard to command a marine safety unit (MSU). She is also the first female to command an MSU in the Great Lakes.


Remembering Eastland

Remembering Eastland

In 1915, the ‘Act to Create the U.S. Coast Guard’ was signed, merging the Revenue Cutter Service and U.S. Life Saving Service to form the modern-day Coast Guard. The merging of these two organizations formed a service whose unique capabilities would prove to be invaluable just six month later on the Great Lakes.


U.S.-Canada Shiprider patrol on Detroit River

Shiprider program proves key to successful law enforcement on Great Lakes

“This is a great success for the Shiprider program, and it comes on the heels of an operation last month in which U.S. and Canadian law enforcement exercised the very same cross-border interdiction capabilities and authorities as used for this case,” said Capt. Scott Lemasters, commander of Coast Guard Sector Detroit. “We couldn’t be more pleased with the result.”


Coast Guard Heroes: Forrest O. Rednour

Coast Guard Heroes: Forrest O. Rednour

As Escanaba moved in to pick up survivors, the men designated for this operation got the rescue equipment ready. Rednour was one of these men. Lines were cut and made ready for hauling helpless men aboard. Sea ladders were placed so that they would be readily available when needed. Heaving lines were made ready, the cargo net was dropped, ready for use, and Escanaba’s retrievers put on their rubber suits with lines made fast to them.


boat

Warm air ≠ warm water

Despite a cold start to spring in many areas of the country, the temperatures are finally heating up. With sunny skies, many boaters are looking to get out on water for the first time this year. The warm weather is deceiving, however, as the water in many places is still dangerously cold.


dog rescue

Dog blog: how to avoid a ruff time on the ice

Last week, the crew of Coast Guard Cutter Bristol Bay rescued a dog that was stranded on the ice on Lake St. Clair. The crew named him Lucky and he has since been reunited with his owners. Following his rescue, he asked us to share some tips to keep his K-9 friends safe on the ice.


Coast Guard Petty Officer 2nd Class Brandon Cummings, an electrician's mate at Coast Guard Station Portage, Mich., hauls a buoy along the station's pier. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 1st Class Thomas Johnson.

Operation Fall Retrieve in full swing

Ice season is here! To ensure the safety of vessels transiting the Great Lakes, crews from around the 9th Coast Guard District began their annual buoy retrieval, Operation Fall Retrieve. Operation Fall Retrieve, which affects lighted and unlighted buoys and beacons, commenced with a goal of retrieving 1,278 navigational aids. The operation, the largest domestic ATON recovery operation in the U.S., is scheduled to be complete in late December.


group photo

Giving thanks: Coady Torio

In this spirit of Thanksgiving, we reached out to Coast Guard fan Coady Torio and asked him to share how the Coast Guard has touched his life. This isn’t just any fan, however, he is a survivor. Torio and his friend, Andy, were rescued by Great Lakes Coast Guard crews earlier this year.


Keeping cargo moving

Logistics in action: Keeping cargo moving

This year’s ice-breaking season has been a busy one filled with successful missions and a few unexpected challenges. One of the latter was a major electrical failure on board the ice-breaking tug Biscayne Bay, homeported in St. Ignace, Mich. While this would be a lofty challenge to overcome, the centralized depot maintenance – resulting from modernization of the Coast Guard’s Surface Forces Logistics Center – repaired Biscayne Bay in a record 44 days.


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