Active shooter training conducted at Training Center Petaluma

Thirty-two participants representing 12 different local, state, and federal agencies including active duty and Reserve Coast Guard members trained together at Training Center Petaluma in late October to hands-on field training and scenario-based practical exercises on active shooter incidents. Active shooter situations are all too common in American society today and this training is meant to help those first responders stay prepared and ready.


Canadian Steamer Princess Sophia. Photo courtesy of Wikipedia.

Avoiding tragedy 100 years after Princess Sophia sinking

This year marks the 100th anniversary of the sinking of the Canadian passenger steamer Princess Sophia. Princess Sophia had run aground in southeast Alaska and was unable to deploy its lifeboats, taking down with it at least 353 people. Today the Coast Guard conducts modern cruish ship exams placing emphasis on crew proficiency during emergencies to avoid another tragedy like the Princess Sophia.


BM3 Chriafisi-Boyd (Station Channel Islands), BM3 David Vela, and BM3 Dax Chacon (both of Station LA/LB), join forces to fine-tune the details of a textbook drifting search pattern.

Station Los Angeles/Long Beach Reservists embrace commandant’s guiding principles

On the southern tip of Los Angeles Harbor’s Terminal Island, after driving through two-mile sea of stacked containers and straight through the center of a federal correctional institution’s fence-lined campus, you will find Coast Guard Base Los Angeles/Long Beach. From the base, you will find scenic views of San Pedro, Los Angeles Harbor and the busy channel that borders the west side of Terminal Island. Among the Coast Guard units, you will find Station LA/LB. In July, Senior Chief Petty Officer Nicholas Bernice had an opportunity to spend a few days with the station’s 25 reservists during their two weeks of active duty training.


The RDT&E Program has even advanced into working in space-based technologies with the DHS/Coast Guard Polar Scout Program. Two small satellites or “cubesats” capable of detecting transmissions from emergency position indicating radio beacons will be deployed this fall to evaluate their ability to detect and geolocate distress transmission in an Arctic environment and provide signal information to a special network of ground stations.

Coast Guard RDT&E Program celebrates 50 years

During its 50 years of existence, the RDT&E Program has completed research that has been vital to the successful advancement of Coast Guard missions including search and rescue, aids to navigation, spill response, and port and cybersecurity as well as supporting the acquisition of new assets such as the national security cutter, offshore patrol cutter and unmanned aircraft system capability.


The Coast Guard responds to search and rescue requests in response to Hurricane Harvey in the Beaumont, Texas, area, Aug. 30, 2017. The Coast Guard is working closely with all federal, state and local emergency operations centers and has established incident command posts to manage search and rescue operations. (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 3rd Class Brandon Giles)

Coast Guard holds hurricane preparedness seminar in Opa-Locka

Florida-based Coast Guard units held the first of multiple training sessions in which people were educated on setting up and executing hurricane preparedness and evacuation plans. Coast Guard members and their dependents listened to high-ranking, experienced service members, including the Master Chief Petty Officer of the Coast Guard, Jason Vanderhaden about what can be done to prepare for a hurricane.


A red handheld flare, the minimum pyrotechnic for which the project investigated alternatives. U.S. Coast Guard photo.

Research, Development, Test and Evaluation Spotlight: Alternatives to pyrotechnic distress signals

Distress flares are vital to boating safety, but pyrotechnic flares can pose a safety hazard to people not trained in their use. In addition, expired flares can create environmental hazards through leaching chemicals when disposed of in landfills or at sea. As an alternative, the Coast Guard has been researching the suitability of light emitting diode (LED) devices as effective distress signals through its Research, Development, Test and Evaluation Program.


The crew of the Coast Guard Cutter Active, a 210-foot medium endurance Reliance-class cutter homeported in Port Angeles, Wash., interdicts more than 1 ton of cocaine from four suspected drug smugglers during a counter-narcotics patrol in the eastern Pacific Ocean, Friday, May 18, 2018. Cutters like Active routinely conduct operations from South America to the Bering Sea to perform defense operations, alien migrant interdiction, domestic fisheries protection, search-and-rescue, counter-narcotics and other Coast Guard missions at great distances from shore keeping threats far from the U.S. mainland. U.S. Coast Guard Photos by Petty Officer 1st Class Michael De Nyse.

Damage control, not damage repair – keeping an aging cutter active

Petty Officer 1st Class Victor Arcelay, a damage controlman and one of the 75 crew members aboard Active, has the daunting task of keeping the 52-year-old Coast Guard Cutter Active, well — active. The Active is currently operating well beyond its 30-year design service life. The Medium Endurance Cutter class is considered the backbone of the Coast Guard’s fleet; however, engineering challenges have plagued the operations of these vessels in recent years.


Hurricane Preparedness Week 2018: Make your safety plans in advance

The Atlantic hurricane season runs from June 1 to November 30, with the peak occurring between mid-August and late October. The Eastern Pacific hurricane season begins May 15 and ends November 30. Take action now so you and your loved ones are prepared.


Coast Guard Air Station Kodiak MH-60 helicopter crew and Marine Safety Detachment Kodiak pollution responders conduct an overflight in response to an oil spill in Shuyak Strait, 49 miles north of Kodiak, Alaska, Feb. 27, 2018. The Coast Guard and Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation established a unified command in response to the oil spill as part of the service’s marine environmental protection mission. U.S. Coast Guard photo.

Research, Development, Test and Evaluation Spotlight: Detection, Mitigation of Oil within the Water Column

As part of the Coast Guard’s marine environmental protection mission, the Research and Development Center recently completed a project to identify and prototype technologies capable of detecting and mitigating the impacts of oil in the water column that show promise for future commercialization and implementation.


Assistant Secretary of Defense Logistics and Materiel Readiness, the Honorable Robert McMahon, Lt. Cmdr. Jason Plumley, Caribbean Basin Security Initiative - Technical Assistance Field Team Officer in Charge, Chief Warrant Officer 4 Alisha Johnson, CBSI-TAFT Logistics Branch Chief, Sgt. 1st Class Matthew Moore, CBSI-TAFT Watercraft Engineer, and Cmdr. Scott Rae, Joint Interagency Task Force - South Deputy Director of Operations. Courtesy photo.

Honor, Respect, Devotion to Duty: Caribbean Basin Security Initiative – Technical Assistance Field Team

The Caribbean Basin Security Initiative – Technical Assistance Field Team (CBSI-TAFT), a team comprised of nine U.S. Coast Guardsmen and six U.S. Army soldiers based at U.S. Southern Command earned the Secretary of Defense Maintenance Award Program. The award recognizes outstanding maintenance units in three categories: field-level, depot-level, and maintenance training, advice, and assistance of foreign security forces.


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