Great Lakes Coast Guardsmen assist Red River flood victims

FARGO, N.D. - Members of the Coast Guard and Cass County Sheriff Department operate airboats to familiarize themselves with flooded areas in the event they need to assist residents, near Hickson, N. D., April 9, 2011. Coast Guard crews are working with partner agencies in the event they need to conduct wellness checks and perform rescues and other critical functions to ensure the safety of the residents potentially affected by this flooding event. The Coast Guard has a total of 54 people in the region to support this operation. There are two airboats, two rescue helicopters, an aircraft maintenance teams, a boat maintenance and support team on scene. An additional 19 personnel comprise the incident management team located at Coast Guard Sector Upper Mississippi, St. Louis, Mo. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 3rd Class Seth Johnson

Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer Seth Johnson

CLEVELAND – Personnel and equipment from various Great Lakes Coast Guard units are in the Fargo, N.D., area this week sharing their knowledge and expertise to help evacuate and provide aid for Red River flood victims in the region.

Stations Marblehead, Ohio, and Belle Isle in Detroit, each sent an airboat and personnel to the region. Air Station Traverse City, Mich., sent one MH-65C Dolphin helicopter, one aircrew and one aircraft maintenance team.

With a total of 54 active-duty, reserve and civilian Coast Guard personnel responding, 20 of them, more than one-third, are from the Ninth Coast Guard District.

“Often the U.S. Coast Guard is the only federal response presence on America’s inland rivers,” said Cmdr. Jon Spaner, commanding officer of Air Station Traverse City. “I’m proud of our unit’s history of involvement with flood response as well as the exceptional efforts of our crews.”

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