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    U.S. Coast Guard Forces Micronesia Post-Typhoon Mawar Update 2

    U.S. Coast Guard Forces Micronesia Sector Guam continues assessments, reconstitution after Typhoon Mawar

    Courtesy Photo | U.S. Coast Guard Station Apra Harbor splashes their 45-foot Response Boat-Medium in...... read more read more

    SANTA RITA, Guam — U.S. Coast Guard Forces Micronesia Sector Guam and associated unit crews continue efforts to manage their recovery and reconstitution operations in response to Typhoon Mawar.

    The U.S. Coast Guard, under the regional Captain of the Port, established the incident management team on May 26, 2023, to oversee these efforts in Guam and the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands. As part of the Service's regular responsibilities, the U.S. Coast Guard is actively working toward reopening the ports and coordinating maritime response activities.

    A U.S. Coast Guard HC-130 Hercules crew from Air Station Barber's Point, Hawaii, will deliver recovery supplies and 18 additional personnel on the evening of May 26 through coordination with partners at Andersen Air Force Base. Their arrival will significantly aid port recovery and pollution response assessments. The aircraft will transport a Federal On-Scene Coordinator Representative, a dive team, and boat crews from the Maritime Safety and Security Team Honolulu to supplement Station Apra Harbor. After landing in Saipan, the aircrew will stage there. We anticipate the arrival of a second Hercules airplane on May 27, which will bring additional personnel to support operations.

    Station Apra Harbor successfully deployed its 45-foot and 29-foot response boats into the water at Sumay Cove. Crews aboard the 29-foot boat have been assessing and repairing the aids to navigation (ATON) constellation in Apra Harbor. The entrance to Apra Harbor is temporarily narrowed due to Buoy No. 2 being off-station by approximately 500 feet, marking the middle of the channel. Crews are actively working on a plan to relocate or mitigate the buoy's position. Visual checks of ATON in all harbors have been completed, with GPS position checks currently underway. Fortunately, the range boards in Saipan and Tinian remain unaffected. USCGC Sequoia (WLB 215) crews repaired the Guam range boards, including Polaris Point and Outer Apra Harbor. All range boards are now repaired, and all Outer Apra Harbor buoys are in good condition.

    U.S. Coast Guard teams continue to work with port partners to conduct pollution and damage assessments related to the commercial port piers, three barges, two mobile crane barges, and a derelict vessel previously reported to have broken free during the storm and grounded in Piti Channel. Although the Piti Channel ATON buoys are missing, they do not significantly limit operations. The dry dock at Cabras remains partially submerged near Pier F3, but the Cabras Island Channel in the commercial port appears clear of significant debris. Assessments of the affected barges and vessels are in progress, and crews do not anticipate them hindering the port's reopening.

    To ensure the safety of the waterways, divers will use side-scan sonar equipment to survey the channels and piers, ensuring that no items in the water pose a threat before reopening. Crews are actively coordinating with vessels awaiting arrival in Guam to make deliveries and manage potential arrivals once the port is open. It is important to note that the ports in Saipan and Tinian are open as of 4 p.m.

    Personnel at District 14 in Honolulu maintained the watch through the storm, and U.S. Coast Guard Forces Micronesia Sector Guam's Joint Rescue Sub-Center is now resuming that watch. The Mt. Alutom Rescue 21 tower is operating on generator power while crews work on repairs for the Merizo tower. However, cellular service remains limited, and anyone working on the water is strongly encouraged to use VHF FM radios.

    Regrettably, the U.S. Coast Guard received reports from Guam Fire regarding two incidents involving missing swimmers. In one case, a swimmer who attempted to swim off Alupang Island before the storm remains unaccounted for despite search efforts by Guam Fire Department (GFD) responders. GFD also reported missing swimmers near Agat Marina; one remains missing, with five individuals either successfully rescued or returning to shore. Guam Fire will have the most up-to-date information on these ongoing cases.

    Responders strongly urge the public to avoid entering the water due to hazardous conditions. Despite its attractiveness due to the heat and lack of power or air conditioning, the water conditions remain dangerous with rip currents and high surf. Bacteria levels in many areas may be extremely high, and debris in the water poses additional risks. At this stage, our response capabilities are limited, and allowing first responders to focus on fully reestablishing services by minimizing unnecessary search and rescue operations would be greatly appreciated.

    We will continue to provide updates as the situation develops, and crews appreciate the cooperation and understanding of the community during this challenging recovery process. The Joint Information Center can be reached for broader updates at +1 (671) 478-0208/09/10, and island-wide updates are posted to




    Date Taken: 05.26.2023
    Date Posted: 05.26.2023 04:30
    Story ID: 445637
    Location: GU

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