General Dynamics Distress System Figures in USCG Search, Rescue Missions

General Dynamics EbizThe U.S. Coast Guard has declared General Dynamics‘ Rescue 21 command, control and direction-finding communications system as a public safety network that enables its missions with ease.

The company said Tuesday the platform has helped USCG process 75,000 search and rescue cases since 2009, providing 90 percent VHF coverage to over 215,000 square nautical miles at sea.

USCG has come to designate these coverage areas — encompassing the eastern, western and Gulf coastlines, plus 20 nautical miles out to sea — under the “Sea Area A1” SOLAS category.

Sea Area A1 means the area is within reach of a VHF coast station with radio distress communications (digital selective calling) monitoring and response capabilities.

“By harnessing state-of-the-market technology, Rescue 21 enables the Coast Guard to execute its search and rescue missions with greater agility and efficiency, which helps to save lives and property at sea and on navigable rivers,” Capt. Glenn Hernandez of the U.S. Coast Guard and chief, Office of Information Assurance and Spectrum Policy, said in the Jan. 9 notice.

Chris Marzilli, president of General Dynamics Mission Systems and a Wash100 inductee, said the company continues to work with USCG to operate, maintain and improve the system designed to provide emergency backup communications for first responders.

Rescue 21, which completed its full rollout in 2012, is also used to assist vessels that navigate on the Great Lakes and other national waterways, and by USGS in various support missions for the Department of Homeland Security.

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