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Murkowski on USCG, AK Nat'l Guard Successes: “We’ve Got a Few More Big Miracles to Brag About”

Murkowski Praises U.S. Coast Guard, AK National Guard for Recent Service

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Senator Lisa Murkowski today took to the floor of the U.S. Senate to laud the recent work of the United States Coast Guard and the Alaska National Guard – the USCG for the Icebreaker Healy’s successful mission to cut a path hundreds of miles through ice to Nome, and the AK National Guard for the troops who shoveled out the community of Cordova earlier this month after their enormous snowfall.

Here are few selected excerpts:

  1. “We say that we do things bigger in Alaska, perhaps a little bolder.  There is a new movie coming out ‘Big Miracle’ about the rescue of the whales back in the late 80’s.  The whales were trapped up in the ice off Pt. Barrow …. ‘Big Miracle’ reminded me that in Alaska we have a few more big miracles that we can brag about and it begins with people who really make the health, safety and well being of others their top priority even when they don’t know any of these people.”
  1. “This is not the Coast Guard doing something for the people of Nome or the people of Alaska that is not part of the Coast Guard’s mission.  This month-long journey was the first fuel delivery thru sea ice in Alaska’s history, but it wasn’t the first time the Coast Guard has worked to get fuel to a community.

“In 2000, Chief Warrant Officer Richard Glasgow testified about icebreaking operations on the Hudson River.  At that time, five Coast Guard cutters performed icebreaking duties from Sandy Hook, New Jersey all the way up to Troy, New York working to get heating fuel to about four million people in communities along the river.  Officer Glasgow testified that as a direct result of the Coast Guard’s continuous icebreaking efforts that winter, all 274 petroleum-bearing barges that started the trip up the Hudson made it through the ice.  He also noted that if the Hudson had remained closed to barge traffic, it would have taken over 21,000 tank truck loads to move the petroleum, assuming trucks were available to make the deliveries.

“So you got a situation where, basically, the Coast Guard comes to the rescue, so they can clear the path so that commerce can be facilitated.  So these communities along the Hudson have the fuel and resources that they need, the Coast Guard made it happen in an efficient and environmentally responsible way.”

The entire speech can be viewed at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5yQULWvnN8Q

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