Coast Guard, Navy, Marines, Air Force conduct search and rescue exercise in Cape Lookout area


Naval Aircrewman (helicopter) 2nd Class David W. Loeffler III, from the “Fleet Angles” of Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron Two (HSC-2) rescues a simulated downed pilot survivor during a live search and rescue (SAR) exercise. Fleet Replacement Squadron HSC-2 is currently conducting routine operations in Norfolk to train pilots and aircrewmen employing the MH-60S worldwide in a variety of missions. (U.S. Navy photo taken by Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class Eric Shorter)

PORTSMOUTH, Va. — The Coast Guard, Navy, Marines, and Air Force conducted a search and rescue exercise off the coast of Cape Lookout, N.C., on Tuesday.

The purpose of the exercise is to test and provide realistic feedback on existing policies, plans, procedures, and agreements with the Coast Guard and partner Department of Defense units within the Fifth Coast Guard District’s area of responsibility.

“We always look forward to opportunities that highlight our multi-agency partnerships, and this outstanding exercise only further underscored the value of our relationships with our partners,” said Capt. Timothy Eason, chief of response for the Coast Guard 5th District. “We were able to exercise the satellite notification system, stress our internal and external communications plans, and safely recover two simulated downed aviators using Coast Guard and Navy aircraft.”

The exercise included recovery of in-water objects, helicopter hoists, use of flares, and mass search and rescue operations.

“This exercise was an amazing opportunity for our squadron to conduct excellent training and further solidify our procedures for a multi-service rescue effort,” said Lt. Austen Wildberger, an instructor pilot at Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron.

The Department of the Navy and Coast Guard frequently work together worldwide to support a variety of maritime operations that are vital to the security and prosperity of the United States.

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