Coast Guard shoots blanks off Camano Head today

The Coast Guard's Port Security Unit 313, based in Everett, will be conducting weapons training south of Camano Head at approximately 11 a.m. this morning, Aug. 25.

"This standard training will consist of boats moving at high speed and the firing of blank ammunition, no live ammunition will be fired," states a news release from the Coast Guard.

The unit involved recently moved from Tacoma and this will be the first time they will be conducting training near Camano Head, located at the southern tip of Camano Island.

Coast Guard Port Security Unit (PSU) 313, was commissioned Dec. 12, 1998. They are part of the Coast Guard's Deployable Operations Group based in Arlington, VA., PSU 313 is deployable to anywhere in the world and is self-sustainable for 30 days.

The unit has a command and control staff in addition to divisions for boats, security, communications, weapons, engineering, logistics, food service and medical staff. Currently there are six transportable security boats assigned to PSU 313. Transportable security boats are modified 25-foot fiberglass hull boats, also known as piranha.

PSU 313 maintains port security both during wartime and peacetime in any occupied foreign port and homeland ports when necessary. For one year following the terrorist attacks of 9/11, PSU 313 provided security for Naval Magazine Indian Island.

PSUs can deploy within 24 hours and establish operations within 96 hours. They provide waterside protection to key assets such as pier areas, high value vessels, and harbor entrances.

Each PSU is staffed by 140 reservists and five active duty personnel. Personnel prepare for contingency operations during weekend drills and normally participate in either an exercise or specialized training during two weeks of annual active duty.

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