USCG Provides New Layer of Port Protection

Wednesday, October 09, 2002
Maritime Safety and Security Team Houston-Galveston (MSST 91104), the U.S. Coast Guard’s newest weapon against terrorism, was commissioned in a formal ceremony Tuesday at 2 p.m., at the Galveston Cruise Ship Terminal in Galveston, Texas. Vice Adm. James Hull, U.S. Coast Guard Atlantic Area Commander, will be the presiding official and guest speaker for the ceremony. MSSTs are domestic mobile units that possess specialized training and capabilities to perform a broad spectrum of port safety and security operations. They will deploy in response to: terrorist threats or incidents; in support of national special events such as the Olympics, or storm recovery operations; protect military load-outs; enforce security zones during transit of high interest vessels, cruise ships and some U.S. Navy ships; and at other times when additional levels of security are needed within our nation’s ports and waterways. Modeled after the Coast Guard’s Port Security Units (PSUs) and Law Enforcement Detachments (LEDETs), they’ll each be staffed with about 100 Coast Guard men and women, ready to respond or deploy, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. MSST 91104, the fourth of six Coast Guard anti-terrorism/force-protection teams to be established as a direct result of the Sept. 11, 2001, attacks, completed an intensive four-week initial training course at Camp Lejeune, N.C., which culminated in a 36-hour exercise in the port of Wilmington, N.C., in August.

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