ASTORIA , Ore. — A local Coast Guard cutter crew returned home Sunday following a 52-day patrol near California and Mexico where they conducted a variety of missions including living marine resource management, migrant interdiction, search and rescue, counter-narcotics and promoted international cooperation.
The crew of the Coast Guard Cutter Steadfast protected the U.S. Exclusive Economic Zone and Channel Islands Marine Sanctuaries while conducting fisheries enforcement boardings and inspections. These operations help protect valuable natural resources, ensure the viability of the Nation’s fishing industry, and promote safety among fishermen. The U.S. fishing industry employs approximately 1.3 million people and contributes $143 billion to the economy annually. The fishing industry is one of the most hazardous in the U.S. Fisheries enforcement is critical to ensuring compliance with both U.S. safety and fisheries regulations.
The crew of Steadfast and Coast Guard partner agencies interdicted a fishing vessel allegedly attempting to smuggle 10 Mexican migrants into the country illegally. Maritime human trafficking is a lucrative criminal activity that exploits desperate people and is inherently dangerous. The maritime domain is a critical front in the ongoing whole-of-government effort to combat criminal networks that smuggle people, drugs and weapons. Steadfast’s crew also assisted in five search-and-rescue cases with interagency partners.
Steadfast’s crew participated in Operation Green Flash, a joint operation to counter illicit trafficking by Canadian, Mexican and United States maritime forces operating off the coast of Mexico and Southern California. Recent events like mass migrations to America’s southern border and record-high murder rates have demonstrated the detrimental effects of illicit trafficking on the U.S. and its international partners. During Operation Green Flash, Steadfast participated in two joint exercises under the North American Maritime Security Initiative (NAMSI), conducting communications and formation steaming drills and exchange of shipriders with the Canadian naval vessels Brandon, Vancouver, Whitehorse, and Mexican naval vessels Breton and Revolucion. These activities greatly increase inoperability, communication and capability among North American maritime forces.
The Steadfast is a 210-foot medium endurance cutter from Astoria.