Coast Guard urges quick report of vessels adrift

The faint shadow of the Polar Bear, a 100-foot retired fish processor that was permanently anchored outside of the Cordova harbor, was seen on the horizon, in Orca Inlet, after it broke loose during a wind storm on Tuesday, Oct. 23, 2018. (Photo by Emily Mesner/The Cordova Times)

U.S. Coast Guard officials are urging the boating public to immediately call them to report vessels missing, floating away or suspected to be adrift.

During summer months an increased number of boats especially canoes, dinghies and kayaks, are swept away by incoming tides. Some areas of Alaska experience 30-foot tidal fluctuations daily, and even high and low tides can fluctuate significantly.

Boats should be properly secured prior to being left unattended. In the event that boats are missing, notify the District 17 Command Center at 907-463-2000 to report the missing vessel, indicating the area and time the boat was last seen and any serial numbers, distinctive markings or things left aboard.

Boaters are also encouraged to educate themselves on the tides in the area where they will be operating, said Cmdr. Mark Kuperman, deputy sector commander for Coast Guard Sector Anchorage.