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Posts Tagged ‘US Coast Guard Auxiliary’

Contact:  Jay Culotta
Public Affairs Officer – Flotilla 081-04-02


January 19, 2011


About Boating Safely Course – Saturday, February 5th in Madisonville

By Jay Culotta
Flotilla 42 8CR USCGAUX

Instructors from the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary Flotilla 081-04-02 (Northlake) will conduct an About Boating Safely (ABS) course from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Madisonville Town Hall on Saturday, February 5, 2011.

Louisiana Law states that “No person born after January 1, 1984, shall operate a motorboat powered by a motor in excess of ten horsepower unless he has successfully completed a boating safety class approved by the National Association of State Boating Law Administrators (NASBLA).  A person who has completed an approved boating safety class shall be in possession of evidence of such completion when operating such a boat.” This law was  effective July 1, 2010 and estimates are that about 8,000 residents of the Northshore still need to complete an approved course.

This beginner boating class will give operators the knowledge needed to obtain a boat license or safety certification in many states, including Louisiana. In addition, many boat insurance companies will offer discounts (about 10%) on boating insurance to boaters who successfully complete About Boating Safely.


  • Introduction to Boating – Types of power boats; sailboats; outboards; paddle boats; houseboats; different uses of boats; various power boating engines; jet drives; family boating basics.
  • Boating Law – Boat registration; boating regulation; hull identification number; required boat safety equipment; operating safely and reporting accidents; protecting the marine environment; Federal boat law; state boating laws; personal watercraft requirements.
  • Boat Safety Equipment – Personal flotation devices (“life jackets”); fire extinguishers; sound-producing devices; visual-distress signals; dock lines and rope; first aid kit; anchors and anchor lines; other boating safety equipment.
  • Safe Boating – Alcohol and drug abuse; entering, loading, and trimming a boat; fueling portable and permanent tanks; docking, undocking and mooring; knots; filing a float plan; checking equipment, fuel, weather and tides; using charts; choosing and using an anchor; safe PWC handling; general water safety.
  • Navigation – The U.S. Aids to Navigation system; types of buoys and beacons; navigation rules (sometimes referred to as right-of-way rules); avoiding collisions; sound signals.
  • Boating Problems – Hypothermia; boating accidents and rescues; man overboard recovery; capsizing; running aground; hazards; emergency radio calls; engine problems; equipment failures; carbon monoxide (CO); other boating and PWC problems.
  • Trailering, Storing and Protecting Your Boat – Types of trailers; trailer brakes, lights, hitches, tires, and bearings; loading, balancing, and towing a trailer; towing (and backing) a trailer; boat launching and retrieving; boat storage and theft protection; launching.
  • Hunting and Fishing, Water-skiing and River Boating – Carrying hunting gear and weapons in a boat; fishing from a boat; water-skiing safety guidelines and hand signals; water-skiing with a PWC; navigating rivers, and other boating tips.

The course is not only for beginners; experienced boaters will also learn tips and safety techniques that will help them become better and safer boaters. Registration is $30.00 at the door, pre-registration is only $25,00. Multi-person discounts are also available. Details and registration can be found at our website, under the tab CLASSES (About Boating Safely). Since class space is limited, pre-registration is highly encouraged. If you pre-register and are unable to attend the class, you will be able to attend another date in 2011 without penalty.

The need for this class is critical as Louisiana ranks fourth in the nation in total boating accidents, only behind California, Florida and Texas. Help the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary improve recreational boating safety because the life you save might be your own or someone you love. Remember, educated boaters and wearing life jackets save lives!

Those people who are not available for this class date can contact Jay Culotta for other dates in 2011.


Contact:  Jay Culotta
Flotilla Commander
Flotilla 42, District 8CR


September 10, 2010


Team Coordination Training – learning how to reduce mission errors

Last Saturday, September 4, 2010, 15 members of the Coast Guard Auxiliary from various flotillas in Division 4 of the Eighth Coastal Region attended an all-day training at the office of Norrhlake Flotilla 42 in Covington, Louisiana. The participants were instructed by William Wellemeyer, Flotilla 42 founder and an Auxiliary member for 35 years.

In the ongoing quest to improve boating safety and increase the skills of those who conduct the Search and Rescue (SAR) Missions, Safety Patrols, etc. the Coast Guard has developed proven techniques that reduce errors that primarily result from lack of or poor communication amongst the team members. Coast Guard and Auxiliary personnel frequently work together on these missions and differences in rank can be intimidating to mission participants who have not been properly trained to speak up when there is a problem or potential problem.

Subjects covered are Effective Leadership, Effective Mission Analysis, Adaptability and Flexibility, Situational Awareness, Decision-Making, Effective Communication and Assertiveness.

For more information on how you can join the Coast Guard Auxiliary and help increase boating safety, please visit this LINK.

The U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary is the uniformed volunteer component of the United States Coast Guard. Created by an Act of Congress in 1939, the Auxiliary directly supports the Coast Guard in all missions, except military and law enforcement actions.


Contact:  Jay Culotta
Public Affairs Officer – Flotilla 42, District 8CR


June 26, 2010, Covington, Louisiana


NOAA Calls, the AUX Responds

Eighteen leaders and members from U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary Flotillas (District 8 Coastal Region, Division 4) attended a four hour training today to become AID Verifiers (AV). Aid Verifiers perform Aids to Navigation (ATON) and Chart Updating to assist NOAA, the agency that produces the charts that guide mariners as they navigate their voyages.

The call from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) for assistance to help update ATONs and Marine Charts in the District 8 Coastal Region was answered by these dedicated volunteers who know firsthand the damage that hurricanes. tropical storms, vessel collisions and aging have done to alter shorelines and damage or move the many Aids to Navigation that mariners use to determine their location and course. This information will also be used to update the U.S. Coast Pilot publication.

These are some typical observations that Aid Verifiers perform:

  • Are lights operational and timed properly?
  • Are bridge structures in good repair, do sound signals work properly?
  • Are Daymarks and Buoys in good condition and located where indicated on the chart?
  • Are Private Aids in compliance with the U.S. Aids to Navigation System?

Flotilla 42 founder, William Wellemeyer was the instructor for today’s course. He and Division 4 Commander James Liverett issued the call for AUX volunteers to help update the charts to reflect current conditions, especially after the many buoys, daymarks and shorelines were altered, moved or destroyed by Hurricanes Katrina and Rita in 2005.

After today’s class, the Division 4 Flotillas will be organizing teams to patrol their areas, performing this important operation to improve recreational and commercial boating safety, the primary mission of the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary.

The U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary is the uniformed volunteer component of the United States Coast Guard created by an Act of Congress in 1939. The Auxiliary, America’s Volunteer Guardians, supports the Coast Guard in nearly all of the service’s missions.

Photo by Jay Culotta

(from left) Instructor William Wellemeyer explains the differences between the three classes of Private Aids to Navigation as DCDR James Liverett and 18 other students listen attentively.