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U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary

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Division 23 Flotilla 23-6
Calvert County's
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Donald M. Haskin, Flotilla Commander

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Waterway Watch

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Boating Safety Tip of the Day
Tip of the Day: Marine VHF

Your marine VHF radio is the BEST way to contact the Coast Guard in the event of an emergency. While it is nice to have a cellular telephone in some cases the marine VHF radio is the preferred and best way to contact the Coast Guard when your vessel is in distress.

Posts Tagged ‘boating safety courses’

First, attract as much attention as possible as fast as you can. I never go on a boat without a , knife, and . The life jacket is first and foremost. The light and the are to attract attention.

Auxiliarist Vincent Pica writes via The blog. Read the entire article here:  Man Overboard! « Coast Guard Auxiliary Live.

Ninth District External Affairs
News Release
Date: June 8, 2011

Contact: Ninth Coast Guard District Public Affairs Office
(216) 902-6020

CLEVELAND — The tragic death of a 19-year-old kayaker Tuesday night near the Apostle Islands in Lake Superior, is a reminder to paddlesport enthusiasts of the importance of life-saving equipment and safe boating practices.

The man, whose name and hometown are not being released, was paddling with three other people when his reportedly capsized, sending him into the 49-degree water of Little Sand Bay.

The other three men went to shore and used a cell phone to call for help at 5:33 p.m. CST and reported they had lost sight of the fourth man.

A rescue boatcrew aboard a 25-foot Response Boat-Small from Coast Guard Station Bayfield, Wisc., immediately launched to search the area and found the missing man unresponsive in Little Sand Bay at about 8 p.m., with a blue life jacket and the bottom half of a wetsuit on. His friends reported that, when they last saw him, he was wearing the life jacket, swim trunks and a t-shirt and carrying the wetsuit when he got underway.

The fact that he was found with his wetsuit only halfway on leads responders to believe he was attempting to don the wetsuit after he entered the water, said Chief Petty Officer James Robertson, officer-in-charge of Station Bayfield. Robertson added that the boatcrew only saw him once they were relatively close, because his blue life jacket made him blend in with the color of the water.

The boatcrew pulled the man out of the water and performed CPR on him while they transported him to shore where emergency medical technicians were waiting.

A medical examiner later pronounced him deceased.

The cause of the accident remains under investigation by the Wisconsin .  For more information about the status of the investigation, contact Mark Little at 715-635-4112.

“As part of our philosophy, we treat every person who is potentially in distress as we would a member of our own family,” said Jerry Popiel, assistant chief of incident management for the Ninth Coast Guard District. “So we also grieve the loss of any boater and express our sincere condolences to the family. Our hope is that the visibility of this incident will serve to remind other waterway users, particularly paddlers, to take all reasonable safety precautions to guard against the dangers inherent with our Great Lakes.”

The Coast Guard urges all paddlers to dress for the water temperature, as opposed to the air temperature at all times while underway, and to always wear a brightly-colored life jacket to increase the chance of being found quickly following an accident. Although air temperatures across the Great Lakes region have risen significantly during the past few weeks, the water is still dangerously cold in many areas, including Lake Superior. Proper attire greatly increases survivability in the event of an accident.

Paddlers are also encouraged to take courses each year before going out onto the water. Many courses are offered throughout the country for all types of recreational boaters and for boaters of all ages. Qualified volunteer organizations, such as the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary and U.S. Power Squadron, and state boating agencies sponsor many courses and provide classes.  Many of the courses are free.

Click here for a resource to help you find boating safety courses put on by the Coast Guard Auxiliary.

Click here for help in finding other boating safety course resources, including those offered by state boating agencies.

Additional paddlesport safety tips are available here.


Saving Lives and Guarding the Coast Since 1790.
The — Proud History. Powerful Future.

As part of , we asked our U.S. fans what item that helps them boat responsibly would they like to know more about. While there were votes for VHF radios, marine flares, life jackets and , there was one item that stood out with the most votes…

Was an ! Read about the faithful at the Coast Guard Compass, the Official Blog of the U.S. Coast Guard:

via Coast Guard Compass.

Ninth District External Affairs
News Release

Date: May 25, 2011

Contact: Ninth Coast Guard District Public Affairs Office
(216) 902-6020

CLEVELAND — The U.S. Coast Guard reminds all recreational boaters to take advantage of several practices and initiatives that, when applied, will greatly decrease your chances of or injury when boating on America’s waterways.

First, the Coast Guard recommends boaters take approved courses and take advantage of free vessel safety checks.

These safety checks and courses are offered by experienced members of the U.S. , U.S. Power Squadrons and various other boating safety organizations.

In 2009, 86 percent of in the United States occurred on boats where the operator had not received formal boating safety training, according to the National Transportation Safety Board. The goal of the U.S. Coast Guard and the campaign is to reduce boating fatalities and accidents across the nation.

To view boating safety class schedules throughout the Great Lakes region, click here.

Additionally, the Coast Guard recommends boaters leave float plans with friends or family members before getting underway. A properly-filled-out float plan can provide the Coast Guard with valuable information if a boater gets in trouble and is unable to contact emergency responders. The float plan should include who to contact if the boater is overdue.

“A float plan gives responders vital information such as your intended course and destination, a description of your vessel, and type of safety and survival equipment you have with you,” said Capt. Stephen Torpey, chief of the incident management branch for the Ninth Coast Guard District. “The additional information provided in a float plan helps us direct our search efforts and improves the chances of survival in an emergency.”

More information and an example of a float plan are available here.

Finally, mariners are urged to check the forecast before getting underway. on the Great Lakes can change quickly and unexpectedly. The National Service marine forecast is available here.


Saving Lives and Guarding the Coast Since 1790.
The — Proud History. Powerful Future.

5th District

News Release

Date: Apr 30, 2011

Contact: 5th District Public Affairs

(757) 398-6272

CRISFIELD, Md. — The Coast Guard suspended its search for the missing man at 11:50 a.m. Saturday.

Missing is Edwin Smullen, 59, from Tyaskin, Md.

A 25-foot Response Boat-Small crew from Coast Guard Station Crisfield and an HH-65 Dolphin helicopter crew from Coast Guard Air Station Atlantic City searched 350 square miles over an 11-hour period for Smullen.

Sector Baltimore watchstanders received a call at approximately 3 p.m. Friday, from a good Samaritan, reporting an aground 20-foot sailing vessel.

Participating in the search were a 25-foot Response Boat-Small crew from Coast Guard Station Crisfield and an HH-65 Dolphin helicopter crew from Coast Guard Air Station Atlantic City along with the Westside fire department, police department, Maryland Natural Resources Police.


Saving Lives and Guarding the Coast Since 1790.
The — Proud History. Powerful Future.

The Coast Guard stresses safety and preparation as boaters take to the water for the forecasted warm weather. Read the rest of this entry »
Vessel Safety Check

2012 Vessel Safety Check Decal

The Coast Guard Auxiliary and
the U.S. Power Squadrons
also inspect kayaks
and other paddle craft.

Boat Safe. Boat Smart.
Get the Decal!

Remember the Maryland 25
Dead Maryland Boaters in 2011

Three Maryland boating deaths in 2012. Three sailboat emergencies, 1 death; 1 swimmer death; 1 allision death with two trauma injuries; 1 major injury from gasoline engine fire,

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Our Instagrams
  • A foggy day in Southern Maryland. Good morning shipmates.
  • Wear it!  News media ask the boaters you photograph why they don't. Start the discussion and save a life.
  • Our cold-water survival training was ultimately made possible by the Guardians of  U S Coast Guard Station Annapolis.  Two Guardians hauled each of us onto the deck of a fast boat.  During the training they made sure we were safe.  I am so proud to serve with these men and women. Each one is an outstanding professional.  Thank you Station Annapolis.
  • Once a crew is in the water survival and staying together is key. Chaining together as they do here the crew shares warmth and prolongs life.
  • A face that could be your next door neighbor. Coast Guard Auxiliary members from three Maryland flotillas took their annual cold-water training at Coast Guard Station Annapolis. Bill Smith from the Drum Point Flotilla reflects the serious of his training in his expression. Bill is not new to cold water.
  • To. feller and Bill Smith, Coast Guard Auxiliary, arrive at Coast Guard Station Annapolis for cold-water training.
  • A two-minute lesson that covered finger dexterity after cold water immersion. We placed a hand in cold water while the instructor spoke for two minutes. One we removed our hands we had to pick up the coin on the table. Not as easy as if looks. Try this only with an expert present.
  • Shawn Moore, Auxiliarist was our cold-water instructor.
  • Ray Feller, Auxiliarist  dons his dry suit. The suit provides significant protection in cold water. Having the suit alone is not enough. Knowing how the human body reacts to sudden immersion was the classroom session of our training today.
  • These volunteers attending cold-water survival training today could be your neighbors. Flotillas from Solomons Island to Annapolis were represented today.  Guardians made sure our training was safe. Another reason why I love to say Guardians rock!
Comfortable Lifejackets
Lifejackets are comfortable and they save lives!

Lifejackets are comfortable and they save lives!

Admiral Lee on Bow Riding

Rear Admiral William "Dean" Lee

“You wouldn’t allow your kids to sit on the hood of your car, so why would you allow them to sit on the bow of your boat?”

Rear Admiral Dean Lee, 5th District commander, United States Coast Guard

The Drum Point Poll

The behaviors Maryland boaters need to change most.

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Chesapeake Chatter

The Division 23 Chesapeake Chatter is available at the Division 23 website.


The Blinker Newsletter is available at the Fabulous 5th Southern Website.


The weekly CGUAX Newsletter is available at SITREP.


THE RBS Department's newsletter WAVES - Watercraft and Vessel Safety is available at the RBS website.

eBeacon The CGAUXA eBeacon Magazine.


SafetySeal.net Newsletter

Uptop in Operations

UPTOP in Operations Newsletter

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Navigator Auxiliary Magazine

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Education Connection

Education Connection

Wear it Maryland

Always wear your life jacket!

Always wear your life jacket!

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