The water was a balmy 80 degrees and calm. A wave rippled across its surface as a small, orange boat sank to the waterline. The four people aboard quickly exited the boat into the water. A voice overhead was instructing them to “conserve energy and float nearby.”
When seven-year-old Sam Fredrickson plunged into the water during a hunting trip with his father, Walter Washington Sr., and a family friend, near Angoon, Alaska, it was Sam’s quick thinking and use of boating safety equipment that ultimately saved their lives.
While servicing aids to navigation and conducting maritime law enforcement operations in Marmot Bay near Kodiak, Alaska, the crew of the Coast Guard Cutter SPAR paid a visit to the native village of Port Lions, AK. This is believed to be the first visit by a Coast Guard cutter to the village since its establishment after the Good Friday earthquake of 1964.
The Iñupiat of Barrow have a history on the waters of the Arctic that can be traced back 1500 years. They owe their survival to the skills they’ve acquired subsisting off the sea’s bounty, and those skills include what they’ve learned about safety. That’s why the people of Barrow welcomed Rear Adm. Dan Abel, commander, USCG 17th District, other Coast Guard personnel and representatives of the Alaska Office of Boating Safety when they brought the Kids Don’t Float education program to the northernmost community in the United States Feb. 3.
It’s only natural that the people of river communities spend a lot of time on, or near, the water, even at an early age. With so many boaters using the frigid, powerful river, its inherent ability to take life contrasts harshly to its life-giving benefits. All over Alaska, waters like the Kuskokwim contribute to one of the highest boating fatality rates in the nation.
Coast Guard Cutter SPAR took time from servicing aids to navigation Tuesday to visit the isolated community of Ouzinkie, Alaska, on the south side of Spruce Island just north of Kodiak to support the “Kids Don’t Float” campaign.
The Coast Guard 17th District officially ended Arctic Shield 2013 five months ago and settled in for a long Alaskan winter. As traffic through the Bering Sea and Arctic Ocean ground to a halt with the encroaching ice, Coast Guard […]
On June 4, 1958, President Dwight D. Eisenhower established National Safe Boating Week as the first week starting on the first Sunday in June. In 1995, the date for National Safe Boating Week was changed to a full week before […]
The Alaska Native coastal people who mastered survival in the world’s harshest climate did not shrink from the open ocean — they respected it, lived with it, and made its rich resources an integral part of their tradition. The seagoing […]
by Lt. Allison Ferko In July, Coast Guard Forces Valdez hosted the AVV Chugach Challenge Day Camp during a fun filled afternoon in the sun. Campers learned about the Coast Guard’s role in keeping our community and the boating public […]