Coast Guard stands up FOL Cold Bay in advance of Western Alaska winter fisheries

Coast Guard Alaska News
KODIAK, Alaska — Coast Guard Air Station Kodiak MH-60 Jayhawk helicopter crews stood up a seasonal forward operating location in Cold Bay in advance of winter fisheries Monday.

This year’s FOL will consist of one Jayhawk with rotating crews from Kodiak. A second Jayhawk and crew will remain at the ready in Kodiak to assist in any long-range or complex cases.

The FOL in Cold Bay ensures the Coast Guard can assist fishermen working in and around Bristol Bay, the Bering Sea and the Aleutian Islands. A Coast Guard cutter equipped with an MH-65 Dolphin helicopter from Air Station Kodiak will also be on patrol in the region throughout the season.

Sunday a Jayhawk crew medevaced an ailing fisherman from the 210-foot fishing vessel Alaska Juris to Cold Bay. In November 2012, a forward deployed aircrew rescued five men from the tug Polar Wind when it grounded 20 miles east of Cold Bay.

Air Station Kodiak utilizes FOLs throughout the state of Alaska to cut down response times to mariners in distress. In the summer, Jayhawk crews are deployed to Cordova and Arctic region.

“We recognize the danger posed by the harsh Alaska maritime environment and the nature of essential work being done statewide,” said Capt. Daniel Travers, chief of incident management, Coast Guard 17th District. “Establishing forward operating locations during peak seasons of maritime activity greatly reduce the time it takes to respond to emergencies from Kodiak and allows us to save lives.”

To read more about the medevac from the Seattle-based trawler Alaska Juris click here.

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