US Coast Guard Cutter from Connecticut
joins Great Lakes Fleet
The Connecticut-based Coast Guard Cutter Morro Bay, a 140-ft icebreaking tug, will arrive shortly in the Great Lakes region to assist in the service's icebreaking mission there throughout the winter months. While there, the crew will assist those of other Coast Guard icebreakers during Operations Coal Shovel and Taconite, the largest domestic ice breaking operations in the USA.
The Coast Guard conducts domestic ice breaking to aid in search and rescue and other emergency operations, mitigate flooding, and to meet the reasonable demands of commerce.
Large quantities of steel, coal, heating oil and grain are shipped throughout the region. The Coast Guard ice breaking services enable the lake shippers to transport an average of $2 billion worth of cargo each year.
Coast Guard cutters from the Northeast and New England have successfully assisted with icebreaking in the Great Lakes for the past two winters - the cutter Penobscot Bay, homeported in Bayonne, N.J., during the 2009-10 winter and the cutter Thunder Bay, from Rockland, Maine, during the winter of 2008-09.
"We appreciate the Morro Bay's assistance, and look forward to working side-by-side with them and our Canadian counterparts" said Rear Adm. Michael N. Parks, commander of the Ninth Coast Guard District. (Photo courtesy USCG)