NEW LONDON, Conn. (WTNH) — This week’s hot sunny days could inspire more people to head out on the water.
Perfect timing for Thursday’s Coast Guard search and rescue exercise.
As part of the drill crews rush to the scene of a capsized boat with eight people in the water. It’s a scenario staged for the SAR drill.
The passengers were represented by eight life jackets set afloat in the Race where currents are quick.
“Person overboard they’re not going to be where they were when you were notified of where they were so knowing search patterns, search and rescue procedures is critical,” said Capt Steven Sinagra of the Groton Police Department.
Police, fire, coast guard, and boat tow companies training side by side. State emergency communications coordinating it all.
“Usually communication is one of the big things that comes out of any event like this,” said Cmdr. Andrew Ely, Chief of Response for Coast Guard Sector Long Island Sound.
Command Sergeant Major John Troxell who happened to be in the area climbed on board for the drill. He is the Senior Enlisted Advisor to the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.
“To see and be here today with the commanding officer Lt. McDonald and watch her allow a boatswain’s mate first class to run this exercise that means that he has been trained, he’s been certified, and now he can be trusted,” said CSM Troxell.
The drill reaffirmed to him that the US has the most powerful and empowered enlisted force in the world. It also allowed the towns to get valuable training for free.
“It works both ways,” said Capt. Sinagra. “The Coast Guard is spread thin as well so the cooperation between all the agencies is what’s getting the job done now.”