Coast Guard Cutter Mustang terminates voyage of commercial fishing vessel for safety violations

KODIAK, Alaska – The Coast Guard Cutter Mustang terminated the voyage of the 42-foot commercial fishing vessel Varag due to safety issues following a boarding 25 miles off of Middleton Island in the Gulf of Alaska Wednesday.

A Coast Guard boarding team from the cutter found the vessel master operating without a life raft available for the crew and with an improperly mounted emergency position indicating radio beacon. The EPIRB’s battery was also expired. The Coast Guard requires commercial fishing vessels to carry these items on board and to have them operational.

The vessel was being escorted by the Mustang’s crew to Seward but is now under tow by the cutter due to a loss of propulsion. They are expected to arrive in Seward Thursday. The crew will be required to correct the safety discrepancies and have their propulsion system looked at by the Coast Guard prior to getting underway again.

The Varag is homeported in Portland, Ore. The 110-foot multi-mission patrol boat Mustang is based out of Seward.

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