It’s in those few seconds after a rescue alarm is sounded that rescue crews have time to grab their survival gear on their way out to a mission. This lifesaving gear is not only for the crew, but also for the lives they’re headed out to save. At Coast Guard units all along the coasts of the United States, it’s the job of the rescue and survival petty officer to ensure survival gear is in proper working conditions; and there’s no one better for the job than Petty Officer 2nd Class Jason Custis at Station Cape May, N.J.
When Hurricane Sandy made landfall late October in New Jersey, the damage left behind was unprecedented. New inlets were created, the shoreline shifted and entire houses were relocated. Millions were left without power; many became homeless. In the wake of the storm, members from Coast Guard Maritime Safety and Security Team Kings Bay, Ga., deployed to support safety and security efforts due to mandatory evacuations.