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USCG Station Menemsha


 Coast Guard Station Menemsha

Dramatic rescues and maritime law enforcement are all part of the job for the 24 men and women of station Menemsha, who keep a watchful eye on the Vineyard and its surrounding waters. Whether skies are blue or winter gray, the Coast Guard remains on continuous alert. During its last fiscal year which ended Sept. 30, Coast Guard personnel from Menemsha responded to more than 42 cases and made over 180 boardings. Boardings are done on both commercial fishing boats and recreational boats, in most cases in the interest of safety.  Check out their Facebook page Here

 Station Menemsha boat house and 29238, 47236, and 47318

Station Menemsha boathouse and a the 47 foot Motor Life Boats (courtesy Michael Blanchard)

Photo courtesy of Michael Blanchard

 A huge part of the station’s mission, no different from the rest of the Coast Guard, is readiness, and a substantial amount of resources are committed to training and service and being on the water throughout the year. They practice at least a couple hours a day.

Station Menemsha covers the waters west of Westport to all of New Bedford, east to Tarpaulin Cove, and all of the Vineyard’s north shore. To the south, the station covers the waters 50 miles offshore.

47 foot USCG motor life boat underway in Block Island Sound
 USCG 47 foot Motor Life Boat Underway in Block Island Sound

Photographed by Timothy Johnson: Courtesy of the Vineyard gazette, copyright vineyard gazette, all rights reserved

Menemsha Station has heavy-weather coxswains who are qualified to go out in 40-knot winds and 20-foot seas. The two 47-foot motor lifeboats (MLB) at the station, are designed to perform heavy weather rescue in hurricane force winds and 20-foot breaking seas. This all-aluminum marine innovation withstands impacts of three times the acceleration of gravity, and can even survive a complete roll-over, self-righting in less than 10 seconds with all machinery remaining fully operational. The MLB has a top speed of 25 knots. What it lacks in speed it makes up for in rugged, all-weather durability.