Page 38: of Maritime Reporter Magazine (September 2018)
Maritime Port & Ship Security
PORT & SHIP SECURITY
United States Coast Guard
The U.S. Coast Guard’s Navigation Center (NAVCEN) is involved in a number of activities that have an impact on all Americans, even if they don’t realize it. From motorists checking directions with their Global
Positioning System (GPS) to boaters to ships coming and going to
U.S. ports, the NAVCEN plays an unseen but vital role.
BY EDWARD LUNDQUIST
With a staff of 19 of? cers, 17 enlisted Navigation Information tem. paying attention. But people aren’t fully personnel and 19 civilians, NAVCEN Management System LNMs can warn aware of it yet.” falls under the Director of Marine Trans- USAIMS.” mariners about hazards “Each district has a relationship with portation Systems (CG-5PW) at USCG The legacy IATO- such as a buoy that is their local Coast Guard auxiliary, which
Headquarters, and is a tenant command NIS system produces the off station, a light that is has programs to go out and verify aids at the Telecommunication and Informa- weekly and annual Light List extinguished, an abandoned – either by boat or by air,” said Gene tion Systems Command (TISCOM) base which are available for download- vessel, or a recent change to a Schlechte, NAVCEN’s Engineering Di- in Alexandria, Va. ing from the NAVCEN website. USCG navigational chart, as well as announce vision chief.
The center is constantly interacting District of? ces use IATONIS to cre- safety and security zones. With the wid- NAVCEN works with the Department with Coast Guard units, headquarters ate a weekly Local Notice to Mariners, ening of the Panama Canal, larger Post- of Transportation and the Committee on of? ces, government agencies, maritime which is available to download from the Panamax ships are now calling at East Marine Transportation Systems, which stakeholders and GPS users around the NAVCEN website. Coast Guard ATON Coast ports, which have been dredged to is made up of 28 federal agencies, to world. units—such as the inland waterway and accommodate them. That means charts coordinate our activities, and is part of
NAVCEN supports the U.S. Aids to ocean going buoy tenders–use USAIMS need to be updated with the new depths, the Future of Navigation working group.
Navigation Information Management to update the status and condition of the or navigational markers repositioned. The center works with National Oce-
System (USAIMS) and Integrated Aids aids when they inspect and service them. “People can report discrepancies on anic and Atmospheric Administration to Navigation Information System (Leg- The Coast Guard plans to migrate func- the NAVCEN website, such as if a struc- (NOAA), the Army Corps of Engineers, acy IATONIS) databases that serve as tionality from the legacy IATONIS sys- ture is missing, or a buoy is off station, or and the National Geospatial Intelli- the of? cial record of all USCG and pri- tem to USAIMS to create one integrated a light is burning dim or extinguished,” gence Agency, which are responsible for vate aids to navigation aids to navigation application for all ATON activities. said Holmes. “We make that informa- coastal, inland, international and mil- (ATON). Most mariners, including weekend tion available to the district for action. itary-related charts. “We have a close “We provide oversight to the 48 thou- pleasure boaters, are familiar with “no- The best way we have of knowing that relationships with these agencies,” said sand – aides, buoys, ? xed structures, that tices to mariners,” and just about every- an aid is not working properly is when Holmes. “The Army Corps of Engineers are in the United States that the Coast one has seen a lighthouse or one of the we get a report from the public. is dependent on NOAA’s survey ? eet for
Guard maintains and manages, to help “aids to navigation” that mark channels Mariners and pleasure boaters can also bottom contour information; NOAA is provide safe, navigable waterways for or warn of shoal water. The NAVCEN report discrepancies using the Coast dependent on the Coast Guard for up- everyone,” said Capt.. Russell Holmes, manages those local notices to mariners Guard Boating Safety mobile app. “We dates on visual aids to navigation, and the NAVCEN commanding of? cer. (LNMs) notices, and promulgates them average about 15 or 20 a month that are we’re dependent on the Army Corps for “They’re all listed in the U.S. Aids to through a broad public distribution sys- reported through the mobile app. They’re information about dredging.” 38 Maritime Reporter & Engineering News • SEPTEMBER 2018
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