31 May 2010

Flotilla Ramp Day @ Cathedral Park

On Saturday, Chris Roosevelt headed up our first VE Ramp Day at Cathedral Park. Six members showed up which included Chris Roosevelt, Paul Ploeger, Murrianna Thomson, Matt and Diane Epstein, and a new member Laura Walters.

With the mentorship of Chris and Diane, Murrianna was able to get her initial five Vessel Safety Checks done to qualify as a Vessel Examiner. Laura observed two VSC's to start her qualification. The boat traffic was fairly steady
[Murrianna observing Paul]
and during the six hours we were there, around 20 VSC's were done.

[ Matt Epstein]

This was an excellent opportunity for the less experienced VE's to learn from some of us who have done hundreds of Vessel Safety Checks. Studying from a book and taking a test is just the start for becoming a Vessel Examiner. It takes time to learn all the different systems of a boat and different types of equipment that may be on a 40 + foot yacht. What you would encounter on a 16 ft. open fishing boat is much simpler than what you see on 46 ft. cabin cruiser.

Being a Vessel Examiner is a great way to teach boaters about Boating Safety. Most of the boaters we encountered Saturday were glad to have the VSC. Only two said No. A couple boaters had trouble getting their lights to work; one was getting frustrated with the white light stick not working. I suggested he check the bulb so when he took the cover off and touched the bulb it came on. He was grateful for my suggestion. Another boater, who had a 28 ft. cabin cruiser, needed a MARPOL trash sticker to meet the VSC requirement. Since I keep a supply of those, I handed him one and he thanked me. It is little things like this that give a good impression of the individual as well as the Coast Guard as a whole.

Diane Epstein FSO-PB

Station Portland Responded to Grounding

ASTORIA, Ore. — The Coast Guard responded to a 648-foot container ship aground in the Columbia River near Kalama, Wash., Sunday.
Sector Portland, Ore., received a call at 1:30 p.m. stating the Pacific Flores had run aground on its port bow due to a steering casualty.
Station Portland, Ore., diverted a 25-foot response boat to the scene.
Two tug boats are on scene and have refloated the vessel.
The ship holds 600 tons of fuel, however all forward tanks have been sounded and show no sign of leaking.
No injuries have been reported and the vessel will remain at anchor in Kalama until the Coast Guard and the Washington Department of Ecology have completed their investigation.
[May 23rd, 2010 by cgnews.] Submitted by Jonathan Polimeni.

13 May 2010

Public Affairs Opportunity: May 22 - Columbia Crossing


Josh Sharkey, FL76, has taken the lead on a Public Affairs event on 22MAY2010 and is looking for some assistance. There will be a Station Portland crew with an RBS-S to work with.
Columbia Crossing PA Event. Saturday May 22nd in the old Zupans parking lot across from Safeway on Jantzen Beach.
Set up starts at 0800 and there is a free pancake breakfast for those working the event at 0930. Event runs from 1100 to 1600.
I am in need of at least two more people to work alongside the active duty crew that will be in attendance and I am still looking for a trailer-able facility to be on display.
You can find Josh's contact information in the Division directory - or email me and I will forward your email. Should be a fun event!