This year marks the 10th anniversary of the Deepwater Horizon oil spill. The rig’s explosions killed 11 and injured 16 of its 126 person crew. were unprecedented. The resulting spill of over 200 million gallons of crude oil became the largest discharge of oil in U.S. waters.
Members from the Coast Guard Office of Emergency Management and Disaster Response, Coast Guard 5thDistrict and the Virginia Department of Emergency Management recently collaborated to bring an exciting emergency management training opportunity to the field: a CG-VDEM pilot of the National Emergency Management Basic Academy.
The U.S. Coast Guard recycled more than 140,000 pounds of concrete buoy sinkers on an artificial reef near Yarmouth, Massachusetts. Coast Guard Cutter Oak and Aids to Navigation Team Woods Hole used the discontinued concrete sinkers to support the Massachusetts Division of Marine Fisheries’ artificial reef program.
The U.S. Coast Guard has been the steward of the nation’s maritime environment for nearly 200 years. As a vital component of the National Response System and homeland security mission, the National Strike Force minimizes the human and environmental impact of oil discharges, hazardous material releases, Weapons of Mass destruction (WMD) incidents, and other natural and man-made disasters. The National Strike Force remains Semper Paratus, “always ready,” to expand and adapt its mission to ever-changing natural and man-made threats to the nation and its environment. The National Strike Force remains “Ready Relevant and Responsive” for any hazard, any place.
U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliarist J. Edwin Nieves compiled oral histories from Coast Guard members who responded in the wake of Hurricane Maria in San Juan, Puerto Rico. Every one of these recorded oral histories proved compelling and revealed the commitment to service, devotion to duty and willingness to make sacrifices that characterizes the Coast Guard and the Coast Guard community. Each of the interviewees made sacrifices for others and endured personal privations.
U.S. Coast Guard Civil Engineering Unit Providence, Rhode Island, piloted a short range Unmanned Aerial System to inspect the construction of new Aids to Navigation structures. The UAS saved the CEU more than 30 hours of work and reduced the risk of having to climb the structures.
“The UAS has allowed us to be more self-sufficient when it comes to accessing hard to reach assets, so we can better serve our operational partners,” Lt. Kieron D. McCarthy.
The Florida Panhandle experienced pure devastation from Hurricane Michael, Oct. 10, 2018. It ripped through coastal towns and made its way inland, driving people from their homes and leaving thousands without power and fresh water. Relief efforts from federal and state agencies, as well as local and out-of-state volunteers, responded to help displaced survivors. The Coast Guard set up an Incident Command Post in Miramar Beach, Florida, in an effort to remove environmental threats from local waterways.
To keep the system moving safely and smoothly, Coast Guard members in Alaska have the unique opportunity of maintaining navigational aids to ensure the consistent flow of goods throughout Alaska’s marine highway. Despite limiting factors, Aids to Navigation Team Kodiak crew members work diligently to ensure the navigational aids are maintained, re-built and serviced.
The Coast Guard is partnering with academia, industry and government to provide cutting-edge training, education and awareness to its workforce. To aid those efforts, the Coast Guard Research, Development, Test and Evaluation Program is co-hosting the annual Maritime Risk Symposium with Oak Ridge National Laboratory and the National Academy of Science – Transportation Research Board. This year’s event is scheduled to be held Nov. 14-16, at Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Oak Ridge, Tennessee.
In September, Dr. Jason Gobat and a team of about 30 engineers and scientists deployed aboard the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Healy in support of a departmental research initiative for the Office of Naval Research. The project, led by friend and colleague Dr. Craig Lee, attempts to better understand how the Arctic ice, atmosphere and water interact. This team deployed sea gliders to help them measure water conductivity, temperature, depth and oxygen.