The Coast Guard finished up training this week in Arctic Alaska. According to a press release, they wrapped up a series of simulated drills in Kotzebue Thursday morning called the Arctic Chinook exercise, which is meant to prepare all those involved for a mass maritime rescue operation in the Arctic.
The activities involved not just members of the U.S. Coast Guard, but also the Alaska National Guard, agencies from the State of Alaska, Alaska Native organizations and the Canadian Armed Forces. Also according to the press release, the training is part of an International Maritime Search and Rescue Agreement between the Arctic Council nations – Canada, the Kingdom of Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, Russia, Sweden and the United States.
The exercise demanded that participants put their theater skills to use. According to the press release, drills involved treating people with simulated injuries, and an HC-130 aircraft from Coast Guard Air Station Kodiak dropped a tent fit to shelter 25 people in Kotzebue. The release said some of the tents in these arctic sustainment packages can accommodate up to 200 people.
Live-field exercises prepped trainees for rescues, leading people to shelter, and interaction with patients who require medical care.