Coast Guard launches student miniboats

S/V PHILBERT from Columbia City Elementary and S/V BOAT-A-LAHTI from Hilda Lahti Elementary photographed on the flight deck of the USCGC STEADFAST before their 2020 launch.

Coast Guard Value and Role: We are a maritime nation; maritime interests are national security interests.  Coast Guard missions foster economic prosperity and national security by ensuring that the marine transportation system supplying food, energy, raw materials, consumer goods, technology and recreation is safe, secure and reliable.  The USCG

• Is a maritime law enforcement, regulatory, environmental and humanitarian agency

• Is a 24/7 maritime first responder – Always Ready

• Is one of America’s five Armed Services

• Is the maritime operating arm of the Department of Homeland Security

• Maintains strong local/state/tribal/federal/private sector partnerships

• Is locally based, but regionally and nationally deployed

• Provides experienced crisis leadership and command/control capability

• Wields unique federal law enforcement authorities

• Is a global maritime safety and security leader

Sector Columbia River (SCR) Area of Responsibility (AOR): includes 33 ports and 420 nautical miles of coast (and offshore) in Oregon and southwest Washington, and 465 miles of navigable rivers (the Columbia, Willamette and Snake River systems to Idaho – a $26B/year maritime transportation system).  SCR is parent command to nine major operational units in WA and OR.  SCR is based in Warrenton, OR alongside Coast Guard Air Station Astoria, and within sight of the Columbia River Bar which serves as the critical entry and exit point to the region’s vital inland river system.  

SCR Missions: include               

• Search and Rescue                            

• Marine Inspection

• Waterways Management

• Maritime Homeland Security

• Fisheries Law Enforcement

• Aids to Navigation

• Boating Safety

• Marine Environmental Protection and Response

• Living Marine Resources Protection

SCR Statistics: average annual  

• 552 Search and Rescue Missions

• 218 Pollution Responses

• 704 Foreign Vessel Examinations

•   25 Homeland Security Vessel Boardings

• 372 Fishing Vessel Examinations

• 207 Facility Security Inspections

• 842 US Flag Vessel Inspections

• 420 Marine Casualty Investigations

• 64 Marine Event Permits

• Countless other events including aerial/ boat patrols, exercises/drills, bar openings and closures, vessel escorts, interagency coordination events, public outreach/education, etc.

Roles and Legal Authorities of the Sector Commander: Commander, Coast Guard Sector Columbia River is the operational commander for all SCR forces (listed below).  Additionally, the CAPT holds the following critical legal authorities essential to maintaining safety, security and environmental stewardship:

• Captain of the Port (COTP)

• Officer in Charge of Marine Inspection (OCMI)

• Search and Rescue Mission Coordinator (SMC)

• Federal Maritime Security Coordinator (FMSC)

• Federal On Scene Coordinator (FOSC)

Total SCR Personnel Strength: 527 Active Duty, 90 Reserve, 25 Civilian, 440 Auxiliary

SCR Units and Personnel Strength:

SCR Hdqtrs/Air Station Astoria (Warrenton): 226 Active Duty, 45 Reserve, 13 Civilian

Marine Safety Unit (MSU) Portland: 69 Active Duty, 20 Reserve, 11 Civilian

Station Grays Harbor WA: 49 Active Duty

Station Cape Disappointment WA: 67 Active Duty & 9 Reserve

Station Tillamook Bay OR: 43 Active Duty

Station Portland OR: 32 Active Duty & 16 Reserve

Aid to Navigation Team Astoria OR: 12 Active Duty

Aid to Navigation Team Kennewick: 13 Active Duty

CGC BLUEBELL, Portland OR (100ft Buoy Tender; 2nd oldest ship in Coast Guard fleet; Commissioned 1944: 15 Active Duty)

SCR Operational Assets: MH-60T Jayhawk Helicopters (3); 52’ Heavy Weather Vessels (2); 47’ Motor Life Boats (7); 29’ Response Boats (8); 16’ ATON Skiff (1); 26’ TANB (2); 20’ Small ATON Boat (2)

Other Astoria, OR Area CG Units

National Motor Lifeboat School, Ilwaco, WA (56 Active Duty personnel)

Coast Guard Cutter ALERT, Homeport Astoria OR City Pier (Commissioned 1968; 78 Active Duty personnel)

Coast Guard Cutter STEADFAST, Homeport Astoria City Pier (Commissioned 1968; 75 Active Duty personnel)

Coast Guard Cutter ELM, Homeport Astoria OR (Tongue Point - Commissioned 2003; 49 Active Duty personnel)

Electronics Support Detachment Astoria, Tongue Point (15 Active Duty personnel)

Advanced Helicopter Rescue School, seasonal school located in Astoria OR (Tongue Point)

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