Coast Guard Cutter Legare is scheduled to return home today following a 44-day patrol covering the Chesapeake Bay and the Florida Straits.
During the heightened state of readiness surrounding the anniversary of Sept. 11th, Legare spent more than 370 hours protecting the approaches to Chesapeake Bay. Legare queried more than 180 merchant vessel
s and boarded eight vessels inbound for Baltimore and Hampton Roads
, ensuring only authorized vessels were allowed access to inland water.
Legare’s vigilance during these security operations was highlighted Sept. 24th, when Legare conducted a port security boarding of the motor vessel Atlantic Lady. Members of the boarding team discovered excessive amounts of fuel and oil in the bilges and the vessel’s oil-water separator wasn’t working properly. Upon further investigation, the boarding team also noted several crew passports had expired. The vessel was directed to a local anchorage and required to complete a port state control safety exam. The vessel was detained at anchorage until the discrepancies were corrected. Immigration and naturalization service was notified regarding the passport expiration dates.
While patrolling the Straits of Florida, Legare coordinated the interception of a go-fast vessel carrying 22 undocumented migrants and two suspected smugglers. After capturing the vessel, Legare assisted in safely returning the migrants back to Cuba. The two smugglers were turned over to the U.S. Border Patrol in Key West, Fla.