Coast Guard crews work to break ice in Mid-Atlantic region

Petty Officer 1st Class Ben Heinze navigates the Coast Guard Cutter Cleat, a 65-foot ice breaking-tug, to help free a local tugboat stuck in the upper Chesapeake Bay ice Friday, Feb. 20, 2015. The crew of the Cleat, which is homeported at Coast Guard Sector Delaware in Philadelphia, assisted Coast Guard Sector Baltimore with breaking ice from the Chesapeake and Delaware Canal to the Upper Chesapeake region. (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class David R. Marin)

Petty Officer 1st Class Ben Heinze navigates the Coast Guard Cutter Cleat, a 65-foot ice breaking-tug, to help free a local tugboat stuck in the upper Chesapeake Bay ice Friday, Feb. 20, 2015. (U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 2nd Class David R. Marin)

Baltimore – The crews of the Coast Guard Cutters Capstan, Cleat and Chock are working this winter to break ice and maintain navigable waterways from the Delaware River, through the Chesapeake and Delaware Canal, down to Tangier Island, Virginia.

The crew of the Baltimore-based Chock traveled to Tangier Island to break ice and aid residents by delivering groceries and medical supplies.

While assisting Coast Guard Sector Hampton Roads, another crew was needed to take over the Coast Guard Sector Baltimore ice-breaking mission.

The crew of the Cleat left Coast Guard Sector Delaware Bay to assist Baltimore during the Chocks’ deployment to Tangier Island.

“As the Coast Guard, we’re pretty limited in our ice-breaking assets,” said Senior Chief Petty Officer A. J. Pulkkinen, the officer-in-charge of Cleat. “So when the [Chock] went down due to mechanical issues, we came down from Delaware Bay to help them out in the Baltimore area.”

The cutters are all 65-foot, ice-breaking tugs and are designed to break ice up to 18 inches thick.



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