Strong winds cause communication problems for Coast Guard

SEATTLE – The Thirteenth Coast Guard District Command Center temporarily lost communications with Coast Guard Group Astoria today due to hurricane force winds sweeping the Pacific Northwest.

A Coast Guard C-130 Hercules air crew launched from Coast Guard Air Station Sacramento and will be patrolling the northern and central Oregon coast to serve as a communication platform for distress calls.

The Coast Guard Cutter Alert and the Coast Guard Cutter Fir, both homeported in Astoria, Ore. will serve as communication platforms.

Coast Guard Auxiliary members will also be providing communication support. They will be monitoring radios and in case of distress or emergency they will relay the call via telephone to Coast Guard command centers.

The following bars are currently closed:

Tillamook Bay, Ore., Cape Disappointment, Wash. and Grays Harbor, Wash.

The following bars are currently restricted:

Yaquina Bay, Ore., Siuslaw River, Ore., Chetco River, Ore., Coos Bay, Ore., Depoe Bay, Ore. and Quillayute River, Wash.

Mariners may request to transit through these waters or to obtain current river bar status by contacting the Coast Guard on Channel VHF-16. For additional information or to report an emergency, please contact the closest Coast Guard unit.

The Coast Guard will make every effort to re-open these waterways as soon as they are considered safe for navigation.

Boaters are reminded to check their vessels for possible flooding and damage as soon as it is safe to do so.

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