Top row, from left: Petty Officers Tim O’Leary and Mark Zwick conduct morning checks on the 25-foot response boat. Senior Chief Dan Murray reviews reports in his office. Seaman Chris Graves assists with serving lunch to the crew. Center: Petty Officer Alex Green serves healthy meals to the crew. Bottom: Lunchtime for the crew.
“Education, not violation” is a catch phrase in the Coast Guard, at all levels. The regular patrol from the Burlington station can stop and inspect any boat at any time and issue citations if necessary, but they would much rather take advantage of such teachable moments to point out minor lapses and give warnings. Dan Murray maintains that education reduces the number of rescues every year, but not all of them, so the auxiliary augments the regular patrols, primarily on weekends. They provide their own boats (about 10 to 15 of them, equipped and certified for the purpose) and are capable of performing search and rescue operations on their own. They will call in the Burlington station’s crew when the situation demands it. There are also a few private pilots who fly aerial patrols in all seasons to watch for people in trouble on the water or the ice. Boaters and pilots are reimbursed for their gas and paid a stipend for maintenance, which Dan Murray says is a small price to pay for the work they do. 4
Summer 2014 / Best of Burlington
Published on Jun 19, 2014
Read about the Burlington Coast Guard Station, the South Village, Lake Champlain and more in the Summer 2014 edition of Best of Burlington.