Coast Guard, partner agencies complete port safety exercise in Savannah

Coast Guard and partner agency crews participated in the Area Maritime Security Training and Exercise Program (AMSTEP) in Savannah, July 24, 2019. The exercise consisted of 25 federal, local and state agencies from the Savannah area. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 1st Class Luke Clayton.

Coast Guard and partner agency crews participated in the Area Maritime Security Training and Exercise Program (AMSTEP) in Savannah, July 24, 2019.  U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 1st Class Luke Clayton.

SAVANNAH, Ga. — Coast Guard and partner agency crews completed the Area Maritime Security Training and Exercise Program (AMSTEP) Wednesday in Savannah.

The exercise consisted of 25 federal, local and state agencies from the Savannah area.

The AMSTEP exercise is used to test the area’s maritime security plans for different disaster scenarios and find ways to improve response capabilities. The Coast Guard led three-day exercise consisted of deploying a command structure, interagency field teams and conducting a field exercise to test the unique capabilities of each agency and their assets.

“Port safety and security is not a single agency mission,” said Cmdr. Norm Witt, the Coast Guard Marine Safety Unit Savannah Commanding Officer. “There are numerous responsibilities and overlapping jurisdictions. Each agency brings a unique set of abilities and strengths to the group.”

During the field exercise, crews role-played a scenario where a container began leaking hazardous material in the port. Agency assets from the Coast Guard, Savannah Fire Department, and others responded and coordinated tactics to contain the spill.

The exercise’s primary goal is to protect the public and region from numerous threats while increasing capability in the 4th largest container port in the United States.


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