Dauntless Returns After 60-Day Patrol in Gulf of Mexico
HOUSTON — The crew of the Coast Guard Cutter Dauntless returned to their homeport of Sector Field Office Galveston, Texas, after a 60-day patrol in the Gulf of Mexico, the Coast Guard 8th District said in an April 24 release.
During the patrol, Dauntless served as an offshore command and control platform, executing multi-agency intelligence collection and law enforcement operations in support of the Coast Guard’s Western Hemisphere Strategy of border security, dismantling illicit networks and preventing illegal entry into the United States.
Enforcing safety measures on fishing vessels in Sector Corpus Christi and Sector Mobile’s areas of responsibility was also a major focus of the patrol. Over the course of the deployment, the Dauntless crew boarded 27 commercial fishing vessels, issuing 23 safety and fisheries violations totaling over $10,000 in fines, and ensured vessel compliance with U.S. safety and fishing regulations.
“I am once again thoroughly impressed with the crew of Dauntless,” said Cmdr. Timothy C. Sommella, commanding officer. “Their tenacity and effectiveness has proven that they are truly masters of their craft. This Eighth District patrol fully supported the Department of Homeland Security’s missions of providing border, national, and economic security for the United States.”
Daily patrols were conducted to prevent illegal fishing in the United States’ Exclusive Economic Zone near the U.S./Mexico border in the Gulf of Mexico. The illegal poaching of highly desirable red snapper is an ongoing battle, as the fish contribute significant monetary value to the economy of South Texas via retail and charter outlets. Dauntless aided in the interdiction of over 10 vessels illegally fishing over the course of the eight-week patrol.
This is the last time Dauntless will return to homeport in Galveston. The 210-foot medium-endurance cutter will remain in port for a brief period before departing for a two-month maintenance period in Brooklyn, New York. From there, Dauntless will shift homeports to Pensacola, Florida. Dauntless was homeported in Galveston for the last 25 years.