Portsmouth Coast Guard crew returns home after New England fisheries patrol

Portsmouth, N.H. ?The crew of the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Reliance returned to homeport here Monday following a two-month fisheries law enforcement patrol off the New England coast.

The patrol included two search and rescue cases, numerous commercial fishing vessel boardings and five maritime security boardings.

Boarding teams from the 210-foot cutter conducted several fishing vessel boardings. Commercial fishing boats are required to maintain specific safety and survival equipment and the Coast Guard routinely inspects the vessels to ensure compliance. Additionally, the teams inspected several fishing boats’ catches, ensuring compliance with federal regulations.

Reliance boarding teams also boarded five commercial cargo vessels as part of a maritime security operation. The cutter conducted joint operations with other Coast Guard units across New England including cutters and small boats based in Rhode Island and Massachusetts. The joint boarding teams assessed the security of the large vessels and crews to ensure foreign vessels entering US ports did not harbor dangerous personnel or materials.

While at sea, the crew responded to two search and rescue cases. One was a two-day search for an overdue kayaker off Isle of Shoals on the New Hampshire coast.

The second was a response to the stranded fishing vessel Gabby G, 100 miles south of Nantucket, Mass. The Reliance crew towed Gabby G and its five-man crew to Block Island, R.I., where a 47-foot rescue boat from Station Point Judith towed the vessel to port.

“This patrol was a real pleasure for the crew; we were close to home, looking out for our fellow mariners and protecting our natural resources,” said Cmdr. Gregory A. Burg, commanding officer of Reliance.

“The North Atlantic in winter is not an easy place to be and it was a real adventure to be out here conducting law enforcement and protecting life at sea in such a dynamic environment,” Burg said.

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