Coast Guard has to call off ice-breaking operation

NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH)–The U.S. Coast Guard had to call off its ice-busting operation on Tuesday night along the Connecticut River. The ice is simply too massive for the Coast Guard cutter, Bollard.

“We couldn’t break through it at a very high rate of speed,” said Chief Derek Strope.

Related: One mile-long ice jam plagues Kent

Aboard the Bollard, you could see ice chunks the size of giant boulders. Strope said the ice hasn’t been this bad since 2015.

“Some of the ice was up to three feet higher than the water line,” he said.

Ice busting is dangerous work.

Related: Ice breaker takes on jams along Connecticut River

“There’s always room for mishaps. You always run the risk of puncturing your hull,” Strope said.

The Coast Guard says it will regroup and reassess conditions, trying to find a plan of attack that will be more effective.

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