BOSTON — Coast Guard crews broke ice, Thursday, to reduce the risk of flooding as snow and river ice begins to melt and flow out to sea along the main channel of the Kennebec River from Merrymeeting Bay, Maine, to Gardiner, Maine.
This operation, known as Operation Spring Break-out, signals the closing stages of the Coast Guard’s 2013-2014 winter icebreaking season.
Covering a span of more than 10 miles of the river, crews broke through nearly 10-inch thick ice to break up the frozen waterway.
Members from Coast Guard Sector Northern New England in South Portland, Maine, worked in close partnership with Maine Emergency Management Agency, National Weather Service, U.S. Geological Survey, Maine Department of Transportation, and Maine Marine Patrol during the event. These agencies have been meeting weekly to assess the risk of flooding along the Kennebec River throughout the ice season.
“The Coast Guard always stands ready to help the citizens of Maine,” said Chief Warrant Officer Bob Albert, the Ice Mission Manager for Coast Guard Sector Northern New England. “We’re the only agency in Maine equipped with icebreakers that can conduct this mission. Since we have the opportunity to assist other federal and state agencies in protecting citizens, we’re going to do it.”
Click the photo for more from the operation.