Coast Guard MSST Deploy to Memphis

Thursday, April 03, 2003
Maritime Safety and Security Team (MSST) 91104, one of the Coast Guard’s units that specialize in waterborne security, deployed today to Memphis, Tenn. MSST 91104, from Houston-Galveston, is in the Memphis area to train local Coast Guard men and women, active and reserve, in law enforcement and security measures as well as conduct safety and security patrols of ports and waterways. Boaters and mariners can expect to see more Coast Guard boats on the water and should be prepared to show picture identification and may be questioned about their activity. Boaters should listen to their marine radios for up-to-date security or safety zone information. Mariners can assist in protecting the ports by reporting any suspicious or unusual activity to the Coast Guard’s National Response Center terrorism hotline at 1-800-424-8802, or to local law enforcement. Modeled after the Coast Guard’s port security units (PSUs) and law enforcement detachments (LEDETs), the MSSTs are staffed with about 100 Coast Guard men and women, ready to respond or deploy, 24 hours a day, seven days a week. MSSTs deploy to events such as terrorist threats or incidents, national special events such as the Olympics, storm recovery operations, and the outload of military equipment. MSST crewmembers also 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. 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. Previously commissioned MSSTs are also located in Seattle, Chesapeake, Va., and Los Angeles/Long Beach, Calif. The ports of New York/New Jersey and Jacksonville, Fla., are also scheduled to receive MSSTs.

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