The Mission of the Coast Guard is especially important in recent years, since the days of September 11th, 2001. It serves as the incoming Port inspection service for the United States and assists the United States Customs service with keeping our shores safe. But one of the most important services that the Coast Guard provides is Search and Rescue for missing persons at sea, and mariners. They are the ones that respond during inclement weather or severe storms, even rescues during hurricanes and tornados. There are a number of different careers available in the Coast Guard that serve in the Search and Rescue Activity.
Aviation: Members of the aviation Coast Guard community serve on both rotary wing aircraft, and helicopters, serving from Aviation Air Stations. Aircrew members work as both loadmasters, aviation crewmembers, and also are cross-trained as rescue swimmers and SAR crewmembers. They work to perform search, assist and locate individuals who are on capsized vessels, or who are otherwise stranded or lost at sea. They work on all different bodies of water located in the United States.
Small Boat Crewmembers: Many of the rescue missions that are performed by the Coast Guard involve small boat operations. Typical shore based small boat crews are made up of three members, a Coxswain or small boat commander, a crewmember, and a machinist mate who is responsible for the engines and mechanical operation of the small boat. They go out from shore stations during heavy weather searching for missing seafarers and others stranded or lost at Sea.
Port Security: Port Security is a vital function that involves dealing with shipping and incoming supplies at all our ports nationwide, as well as being pressed into service at times of Search and Rescue operations. They work to protect our nations ports by inspection and evaluation of all incoming seagoing materials and shipping.
All enlisted crewmembers start with basic training at Cape May, New Jersey. It is a 9-week course that gives the recruit the information and training they need to function in the oldest continuous seagoing service, the United States Coast Guard. The Coast Guard has a number of different missions that they perform during both peacetime and wartime. Their missions are: Maritime interception operations, guarding against smuggling and terrorist attacks, environmental defense of the nations waterways, Coastal security and engagement, and port defense and security operations.