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Articles Posted in Coast Guard

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https://www.maritimeinjurylawyersblog.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/155/2021/09/U.S.-Coast-Guard-Bertholf-300x150.jpgOn a recent patrol of the Bering Sea and Arctic regions, the U.S. Coast Guard reportedly established contact with the Chinese People’s Liberation Army Navy (PLAN). Among the patrol vessels were the BERTHOLF and the KIMBALL, both 418-foot legend-class security cutters. In addition to these vessels, the HEALY, a 420-foot medium icebreaker was on the scene.

It is reported that all exchanges between the U.S. Coast Guard and PLAN were in accordance with international standards established by the Western Pacific Naval Symposium’s Code for Unplanned Encounters at Sea and Convention on the International Regulations for Preventing Collisions at Sea.

The PLAN task force was reported to include a guided missile destroyer, an auxiliary vessel, and a general intelligence vessel. The Chinese vessels were reportedly conducting “military and surveillance operations” while deployed in the Bering Sea and North Pacific Ocean. They were sighted as close as 46 miles off the coast of Aleutian Island, but at no time did the PLAN task force enter U.S. territorial waters. Territorial waters are defined as 12 nautical miles from the baseline of a coastal state. Within this zone, the coastal state exercises full sovereignty over the air space above the sea and over the seabed and subsoil.

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Newport_Rescue_USCG-300x199The U.S. Coast Guard medevaced an injured fisherman on Monday, July 19th near Newport, Oregon. The operator of a 40-foot commercial fishing vessel called watchstanders at the U. S. Coast Guard Sector North Bend command center at approximately 1:15p.m. to request assistance after a 70-year old fisherman lost consciousness.

The fishing vessel was located approximately 5 miles west of Newport, Oregon at the time of the call. The Sector North Bend rescue crew was conducting training exercises in the area and was able to reach the scene of the incident by 1:45 p.m. An MH-65 Dolphin helicopter crew hoisted the injured fisherman. He was then taken to the U.S. Coast Guard Air Facility in Newport, Oregon, transferred to awaiting emergency medical service personnel, then taken to a local hospital for a higher level of care. The injured fisherman’s condition is currently unknown.

Injuries that involve loss of consciousness can be serious. The attorneys at Stacey and Jacobsen, PLLC are some of the most experienced in the nation at handling maritime injury accidents. They have the compassion, commitment, skill, and knowledge to recover fair compensation for crewmembers injured at sea. If you have been injured at sea and need assistance with your claim, all (877) 956-4337 for a free case consultation.

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Kirkbride-300x150It is with great pleasure that we announce SN Theodore Noah S. Kirkbride of USCG Station Maui has been named the 2020 Enlisted Person of the Year.

Kirkbride, currently assigned to U.S. Coast Guard Station Maui, is originally from San Diego, California, where he graduated from Mount Carmel High School. After completing U.S. Coast Guard bootcamp in 2018, he was stationed in Maui, where he received training and developed his passion for emergency response work.

“I joined the Coast Guard seeking adventure, however, since reporting to my first unit, my whole purpose behind joining has changed dramatically,” said Kirkbride. “I realized how much we are able to do for the community; I may have joined for adventure, but I’m staying because I feel like I can help build better communities.”

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Coast-Guard-Grays-Harbor-300x150It is with great sadness that we report the search for a missing fisherman near Grays Harbor, Washington has been suspended.

Jason LaBrie, a 47-year-old from Oregon City, was reported overboard on Thursday, May 13th after crewmembers aboard the 26-foot F/V DEFIANCE II discovered he was missing. The crew was halibut fishing approximately 28 miles off the coast of Grays Harbor at the time of the incident.

F/V DEFIANCE II crew activated an EPIRB (Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacon) at about 12:39 P.M. and within minutes, watchstanders at District 13 alerted all vessels in the area about the missing mariner. A 47-foot lifeboat and an MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter were deployed. Search-and-rescue crews were on the scene by 1:10 p.m.

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Cordova_Alaska_Forward-300x150In anticipation of increased maritime activity during the summer fishing season, the U.S. Coast Guard Air Station Kodiak has opened the aviation support facility in Cordova, Alaska. An MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter, safety gear, and equipment were transferred to Cordova by Air Station Kodiak aircrews on Saturday, May 1st, 2021. These forward deployed hubs dramatically reduce response times and have been proven to save lives when accidents happen.

“Establishing forward operating locations helps us ensure the safety of mariners during peak fishing seasons in the region by allowing us to get on scene faster,” said Lt. Scott Kellerman, a helicopter pilot from Air Station Kodiak. “Staging crews and aircraft in Cordova can eliminate hours of flight time transiting from Kodiak to maritime emergencies in eastern Alaska during one of the busiest fishing seasons of the year.”

By establishing seasonal locations throughout the state of Alaska, the U.S. Coast Guard can cut down response times to all mariners by reducing the distance aircrews must travel when responding to emergencies.

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FaceMasks12x6-300x150The fishing and maritime industries have been hit hard by COVID-19 as outbreaks have swiftly traveled through vessels and processers. No one knows for certain how an individual will respond to the virus; many show no signs of illness but may be highly contagious. Others become so ill they require hospitalization, and many develop long-term medical conditions as a result of the illness. Every aspect of the seafood supply chain has been distressed by the pandemic, especially for those who work in fishing and processing.

To reduce the transmission of COVID-19, the Center for Disease Control (CDC) has issued an emergency order requiring all persons “traveling on conveyances into and within the United States” to wear a face mask. But how does this affect the fishing and maritime industries?

U.S. Coast Guard has been granted the authority to implement public health measures consistent with the CDC guidelines at seaports (e.g., passenger terminals, cargo handling facilities, and other shoreside facilities that provide transportation of persons or cargo). The CDC mask requirement has been interpreted by the U.S. Coast Guard to apply to “all forms of commercial maritime vessels,” including cargo ships, fishing vessels, research vessels, and self-propelled barges.  The Marine Safety Information Bulletin states that all persons working or traveling on commercial vessels are required to “wear a face mask or cloth face covering when outside of individual cabins.”

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Surgeon12x6-300x150Before heading off to sea, workers have a great deal of planning and details to attend to. The last thing anyone wants to think about is becoming ill at sea. For many, COVID-19 has been the current threat, but for others, appendicitis at sea is a genuine and dangerous health emergency that requires immediate attention.

Each year about 300,000 Americans will require an emergency appendectomy or the surgical removal of the appendix. Acute appendicitis is most common among people between 10 and 35 years of age. Among the U.S. population, 1 in 20 will suffer from appendicitis at some time in their lives. Surgery is usually on an urgent or emergency basis and among health care experts is regarded as the best course of action.

When severe abdominal pain and nausea set in, most individuals will quickly seek medical attention that will result in a swift surgery. But what happens when the victim is working at sea? Assistance is required immediately. Last week, Watchstanders in the 17th District command center in Juneau received the call from the F/V ARICA requesting a medevac for one of their crew members who was presenting with signs of appendicitis.

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Coast-Guard-MH-60-Jayhawk-300x169A 22-year-old crewmember was medevaced on August 8th after experiencing medical complications due to pregnancy. The crewmember was working aboard the F/V NORTHERN JAEGER, a 308-foot factory trawler owned by American Seafoods.

An MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew was dispatched after District 17 Command Center personnel in Alaska received the call for assistance on Saturday morning.

The F/V NORTHERN JAEGER was located about 200 miles northeast of St. Paul, Alaska at the time of the call. U.S. Coast Guard personnel arrived at the vessel at approximately 2:45 p.m., and the MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crew hoisted and transported the crewmember to Cold Bay, Alaska. She was then transferred to a higher level of medical care.

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Astoria-300x196Those who work at sea know the importance of the U.S. Coast Guard as first responders. This work is so vital to the maritime trades that they have designated two new cities as “Coast Guard Cities”, Cordova, Alaska and Westport, Washington. This program was created in 1998 by the United States Congress to identify and distinguish those cities that supported Coast Guard personnel. The first city to be recognized was Grand Haven, Michigan.

What is a “Coast Guard City”?

Currently, there are 28 cities in the U.S designated as Coast Guard Cities and Communities. This distinction is given to cities where service members and their families are highly supported by citizens. Cities apply for Coast Guard City status and are selected by the Standing Board. Cities that are granted status are eligible to remain part of this program for 5 years, at which time they may reapply for recertification. Current cities and criteria are available at Coast Guard Cities.

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Boot-e1573002489495-668x1024Processing fish at sea has numerous benefits. At-sea-processing offers consumers the freshest product, reduces waste due to spoilage, and minimizes transportation fuel costs. But what happens to the waste products such as fish heads, fins and internal fish organs? They cannot simply be thrown overboard as they are considered “garbage”. The IMO has set up rules and regulations for the prevention of pollution by garbage from vessels and is covered under the Annex V of MARPOL.

MARPOL food waste disposal regulations require grinding seafood waste remains into particles ½” or smaller before they can be disposed of in Alaskan waters. This means that fish processing vessels must be outfitted with industrial grinders that can handle these byproducts. In addition, the ground seafood waste can only be discharged when the vessel is 3 nautical miles or more from land or 12 nautical miles from land if the vessel is in a location deemed “special”.

But these are not just any grinders. These heavy-duty industrial grinders, such as the Muffin Monster industrial seafood waste processor, must be able to grind rocks that have been ingested by sea creatures and stainless steel fishhooks that may still be in their mouths. It isn’t unusual for a halibut head to weigh more than 35 pounds, and these industrial grinders are known to macerate it in less than 20 seconds.

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