U.S. Coast Guard Sector San Diego Accepts Rescue 21

SAN DIEGO — The U.S. Coast Guard formally accepted its Rescue 21 advanced command, control and communications system at Sector San Diego in ceremony today. The Coast Guard created Rescue 21 to better locate mariners in distress and save lives and property at sea.

As the maritime version of 9-1-1, it facilitates better communication and interoperability among first responders in emergency situations and provides increased communications coverage out to a minimum of 20 nautical miles off the coastal zone. With its advanced direction-finding capabilities and increased range, Rescue 21 helps take the search out of search and rescue. The systems also helps identify hoax distress calls that can unnecessarily divert Coast Guard assets and manpower.

Rear Adm. Ronald J. Rábago, the Coast Guard’ s assistant commandant for acquisition joined Rear Adm. Joseph Castillo, commander, 11th Coast Guard District, to talk about how Rescue 21 is enhancing mission execution and maritime safety along the coast of southern California.

U.S. Rep. Susan Davis (D-Calif.), who serves on the House Armed Services Committee and represents the congressional district that includes Sector San Diego, was the event’ s keynote speaker. Lee Wright, senior director, national communications and homeland security business for General Dynamics C4 Systems, also delivered remarks. General Dynamics C4 Systems was awarded the Rescue 21 production contract in September 2002.

“The Rescue 21 system harnesses today’ s technology and enables the Coast Guard to execute all missions, especially its search and rescue mission, with greater agility and efficiency,” said Castillo. “Rescue 21’s direction-finding capabilities provide lines of bearing to the source of the transmission, which significantly reduces the size of our search area and enables our watchstanders to more accurately direct response assets to the distressed mariner.”

Today’ s acceptance formally brings those capabilities to Sector San Diego and increases the total U.S. coastline currently covered by Rescue 21 to more than 35,000 miles. For more information about Rescue 21, please visit www.uscg.mil/acquisition/rescue21.

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