ANCHORAGE, Alaska — The Coast Guard urges the boating public of Alaska to immediately call the Coast Guard in the event that a vessel is missing, floats away, or is suspected to be adrift.
The Coast Guard has observed that during the summer months an increased number of boats, especially canoes, dinghies and kayaks, are swept away by incoming tides. There are areas in Alaska that can experience 30-foot daily tidal fluctuations, and even high and low tides can fluctuate significantly.
Boaters are encouraged to properly secure their boats prior to leaving them unattended. In the event boaters find their boats missing, do not hesitate to notify the District 17 Command Center at to report the missing vessel.
“We ask the public to be vigilant about securing their boats, but to be equally vigilant about letting us know when a boat accidentally drifts away,” said Cmdr. Mark Kuperman, deputy sector Commander for Coast Guard Sector Anchorage. “If we receive a report of a boat adrift with no one aboard, we presume the boater may now be in the water, needs help, and we go out searching. In the instance where a vessel has simply drifted away from its owner, our resources are then taken away from responding to people who may truly be in distress.”
Boaters should indicate the area and time the boat was last seen and any serial numbers, distinctive markings or things left aboard.
Boaters are also encouraged to educate themselves on the tides in the area they will be operating.