Coast Guard Celebrates 216 Years

Thursday, August 03, 2006
Local Coast Guard units plan on celebrating the Coast Guard's 216th year of serving the American public and protecting the nations waterways tomorrow. August 4, 1790, the Revenue Cutter Service was born when the 1st Congress approved the building of 10 cutters to enforce tariff and trade laws, prevent smuggling and protect the collection of the federal revenue, all while defending the young nation. The U.S. Life Saving Service was later created in response to a series of shipping accidents along the Eastern coast. Lifesaving stations were created up and down the coast and were often times manned by local towns people who carried out the rescue of shipwreck survivors.

Since that date, the Light House Service, the Life Saving Service, the Steamboat Inspection Service, and the Bureau of Navigation have combined with the Revenue Cutter Service to form what is now known as the nation's oldest continuous sea-going service and premier maritime agency, the United States Coast Guard. The modern missions of the Coast Guard are directly tied to the diverse achievements and legacy of these other services. Every day the Coast Guard continues to serve as the nation's front-line agency for a multitude of maritime missions, including protecting our coastline and ports, enforcing maritime laws, saving lives of mariners in distress, protecting the environment and maintaining aids to navigation.

Every day the Coast Guard saves 15 lives, conducts 82 search-and-rescue cases, enforces 115 security zones, tracks 3,004 vessels in the Automated Merchant Vessel Reporting system and seizes 27 pounds of marijuana and 927 pounds of cocaine with a street value of $12.4 million dollars.

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