Stratton Goes To 7th Fleet, Waesche Goes South, All Four Alameda NSCs Underway

The Coast Guard Cutter Stratton passes underneath San Francisco’s Bay Bridge as Stratton and the crew depart on a months-long deployment to the Western Pacific in support of the U.S. Indo-Pacific Command, June 12, 2019. Operating under the tactical control of the U.S. 7th Fleet commander, Stratton and crew are scheduled to engage in professional exchanges and capacity-building exercises with partner nations in the Western Pacific and to patrol and operate as directed. U.S. Coast Guard photo by Petty Officer 1st Class Matthew S. Masaschi.

The following is a PACAREA press release 

ALAMEDA, Calif. – The Coast Guard Cutters Stratton and Waesche set sail Wednesday for months-long deployments to opposite ends of the Pacific. With their departure, all four of the national security cutters homeported in Alameda are currently on patrol.

The crew aboard the Waesche departed for a months-long deployment to the Eastern Pacific Ocean to conduct counterdrug operations. Earlier this year, Waesche returned to Alameda following a 95-day counterdrug patrol where the crew had two at-sea interdictions, seizing more than 6,300 pounds of cocaine.

Stratton deployed to the Western Pacific Ocean where the Alameda-based Coast Guard Cutter Bertholf has been since departing the Bay Area in January. Stratton will operate in support of U.S. Indo-Pacific Command, which oversees military operations in the Western Pacific.

Operating under the tactical control of U.S. 7th Fleet, Stratton is scheduled to engage in professional exchanges and capacity-building exercises with partner nations and to patrol and operate as directed.

“The Coast Guard’s deployment of resources to the Indo-Pacific directly supports the United States’ goal to strengthen maritime governance, safety, and security across the region, and we do that by working with, and learning from, our many partners and partner nations in the region,” said Vice Adm. Linda Fagan, commander, Coast Guard Pacific Area, who oversees the cutter.

“The United States is a Pacific nation, and the Coast Guard has been operating in the pacific for over 150 years. We have developed long-standing partnerships with nations in the region, and we share a strong commitment to a free and open Indo-Pacific governed by a rules-based international system that promotes peace, security, prosperity, and the sovereignty of all nations.”

As both a federal law enforcement agency and an armed force, the Coast Guard is uniquely positioned to conduct defense operations in support of combatant commanders on all seven continents. The service routinely provides forces in joint military operations worldwide, including the deployment of cutters, boats, aircraft and deployable specialized forces.

“We are a military service, we are also a law enforcement organization, a regulatory agency, a first response agency, and a member of the intelligence community,” said Fagan. “We are at all times a military force and at all times a law enforcement force. This duality of our authorities provides an incredible degree of flexibility and access and authority. The Coast Guard’s distinct authorities and missions means that we provide a mix of expertise and capabilities that no other U.S. agency can.”

Coast Guard Island in Alameda is the homeport to four Coast Guard legend class national security cutters. NSCs are 418-feet long, 54-feet wide, and have a 4,600 long-ton displacement. They have a top speed in excess of 28 knots, a range of 12,000 nautical miles, endurance of up to 90 days and can hold a crew of up to 170. These multi-mission cutters and crew are capable of operating from the Bering Sea to the Eastern Pacific Ocean to the South China Sea.

National security cutters feature advanced command and control capabilities, aviation support facilities, stern cutter boat launch and increased endurance for long-range patrols enabling the crews to disrupt threats to national security further offshore.

The Coast Guard is scheduled to commission its seventh and eighth national security cutters, the Coast Guard Cutters Kimball and Midgett, in August. Both cutters will be homeported in Honolulu and enhance the Coast Guard’s presence throughout the Indo-Pacific region.

12 thoughts on “Stratton Goes To 7th Fleet, Waesche Goes South, All Four Alameda NSCs Underway

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  4. News release on Stratton’s activities enforcing fisheries in the Western Pacific. The Photos that came with the news release look like she has been “rode hard and put up wet.”

    News Release

    U.S. Coast Guard 14th District Hawaii and the Pacific
    Contact: 14th District Public Affairs
    Office: (808) 535-3230
    After Hours: (808) 265-7748
    14th District online newsroom
    Coast Guard Cutter Stratton conducts fisheries patrol en route Guam from Philippines

    Editors’ Note: Click on images to view more or download a high-resolution version.
    Click here to view or download the b-roll video of Stratton arriving to Guam.
    APRA HARBOR, Guam — On the heels of their operations combatting United Nations sanctions violations in support of the U.S. Navy’s Seventh Fleet, the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Stratton (WMSL 752) arrived in Guam, Monday, furthering the United States’ commitment to regional security and partnerships.
    This arrival comes after seven successful high seas fisheries boardings under the authority of the Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission (WCPFC) while on their transit between the Philippines and Guam. This part of their deployment is intended to deter illegal fishing of highly migratory fish stocks such as tuna. It also furthers relationships with Pacific Island Nations and Territories.
    “This was a unique opportunity to employ some of the Coast Guard’s newest technology and capabilities on the global problem of illegal, unreported, unregulated (IUU) fishing,” said Capt. Bob Little, Stratton’s commanding officer. “We are happy to support Oceania in our shared goal of sustaining global fish stocks, which are critical to many Pacific Island economies.”
    Stratton personnel boarded vessels flagged from Chinese Tapei, inspected documentation, catch logs, fish holds, and interviewed the master and crew. The most common violation discovered involved failure to transmit a signal on the Vessel Management System, designed to help provide visibility of fishing activity in the WCPFC region.
    “We employed our Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) to expand our horizons and find vessels in the area. This allowed us to maximize the use of our boarding teams and amplify our enforcement efforts over a short period of time,” said Andrew Dunlevy, Stratton’s operations officer.
    The Western and Central Pacific Ocean is home to the “tuna belt” and supplies about 60 percent of the global tuna supply, worth an estimated $7 billion a year. With more than 5,600 fishing vessels registered with the Western and Central Pacific Fisheries Commission, there are serious concerns about the sustainability of straddling fish stocks. Illegal, unreported, and unregulated fishing presents a significant threat to the multi-national fishing fleets that operate in the region.
    During each fisheries patrol, the U.S. Coast Guard is protecting the U.S. Exclusive Economic Zone from foreign fishing vessel encroachment, enforcing domestic living marine resources laws, and ensuring compliance with international agreements.
    One of these international arrangements is the WCPFC, comprised of 40 member nations, territories, and cooperating non-members that regulate fishing for highly migratory species on the high seas of the Western and Central Pacific Ocean. Within these partnerships, the Coast Guard works closely to ensure all fishing fleets are complying with the provisions of the agreement.
    Fish stocks are a renewable resource if managed correctly and not overfished. More importantly, fish stocks are a global food source and provide economic stability for many countries. In the U.S. alone, the fishing industry employs 1.3 million people and contributes $199 billion per year to the U.S. economy, according to NOAA’s 2012 Economic Report.
    Many Pacific Island Nations rely on the fishing industry for revenue and sustenance. Depleted fish stocks could contribute to the destabilization of the region and leave small nations vulnerable to dangerous transnational organized crime networks.
    Stratton is the third Legend-class National Security Cutter. The 418-foot vessel homeports in Alameda, California. The 150 crew have been on deployment under the operational control of the Navy’s Seventh Fleet in the Indo-Pacific region since June conducting joint missions. Their motto “We Can’t Afford Not To” is very apt in the face of regional IUU activity. Their patrol will continue as the head east through November.
    The U.S. Coast Guard has an enduring role in the IndoPacific, going back over 150 years. The service’s ongoing deployment of resources to the region directly supports U.S. foreign policy and national security objectives in the IndoPacific Strategy and the National Security Strategy.
    -USCG-

  5. Stratton has returned. Press release below. Apparently no replacement sent to the Western Pacific yet.

    News Release

    U.S. Coast Guard Pacific Area
    Contact: Coast Guard Pacific Area Public Affairs
    Office: (510) 437-3375
    After Hours: (510) 816-1700
    D11-DG-M-PACAREA-PA@uscg.mil
    Pacific Area online newsroom
    Nov. 22, 2019
    Coast Guard Cutter Stratton returns to Alameda following 162-day patrol

    ALAMEDA, Calif. — The crew aboard U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Stratton (WMSL 752) returned Friday to their homeport of Alameda following a 162-day deployment to the Western Pacific ocean.
    The crew departed Alameda June 13 and has operated under the tactical control of the commander of the U.S. Navy’s 7th Fleet. In the Western Pacific, the crew patrolled and conducted operations as directed, including enforcing United Nations Security Council resolutions against the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea by monitoring and gathering intelligence on vessels conducting ship-to-ship transfers in the East China, South China and Yellow Seas.
    They also engaged in professional exchanges and visited ports in Fiji, Australia, Indonesia, Malaysia and the Philippines. Crew members combated illegal fishing and conducted community relations events and capacity-building exercises with navies and coast guards throughout the region.
    The U.S. Coast Guard has an enduring role in the Indo-Pacific, going back over 150 years. The service’s ongoing deployment of resources directly supports U.S. foreign policy and national security objectives in the Indo-Pacific region.
    “The U.S. Coast Guard is proud to operate with our Pacific counterparts, and together we are dedicated to enhancing our capabilities and strengthening maritime governance and security while promoting individual sovereignty,” said Vice Adm. Linda Fagan, commander of the U.S. Coast Guard’s Pacific Area.
    Commissioned in 2010, Stratton was the third of the Coast Guard’s legend class national security cutters. Eight national security cutters are currently in service, including four homeported in Alameda and two in Honolulu.
    These technologically-advanced ships are 418 feet long, 54 feet wide and have a 4,600 long-ton displacement. They have a top speed in excess of 28 knots, a range of 12,000 nautical miles, endurance of up to 90 days and can accommodate a crew of up to 170.
    National security cutters feature advanced command-and-control capabilities, aviation support facilities, stern cutter boat launch and increased endurance for long-range patrols to disrupt threats to national security further offshore.
    “The U.S. Coast Guard’s unique authorities, capabilities, and missions make us the maritime safety and security partner of choice for sea-going countries around the world,” Fagan said. “Our increased presence throughout the Indo-Pacific will enhance regional stability and improve maritime governance and security.”
    -USCG-

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