General Dynamics Hands Over Rescue 21 to USCG, Sector San Juan

The U.S. Coast Guard on May 29 formally accepted the General Dynamics C4 Systems-built Rescue 21 search and rescue communications system now serving Sector San Juan.

With the command center located in Old San Juan, Puerto Rico, Sector San Juan is responsible for all Coast Guard missions throughout the Puerto Rico and U.S. Virgin Islands region. Using advanced direction-finding technologies and digital communications, the life-saving Rescue 21 system enables Coast Guard personnel to respond rapidly and efficiently to calls from distressed mariners out to at least 20 nautical miles from shore. The system also enables them to be more effective in responding to security and maritime environmental threats.

“As the national Rescue 21 system, with its 245 towers, moves closer to becoming a nationwide interoperable communication network, we look forward to delivering a much-needed interconnection for port security,” said Chris Marzilli, president of General Dynamics C4 Systems.Rescue 21 is a model program that demonstrates how broadband technologies are improving maritime situational awareness, communication and collaboration among agencies.”

Rescue 21 is interoperable with federal, state and local law enforcement agencies and emergency first responders’ communication systems, enhancing inter-agency cooperation that enables the Coast Guard to be more effective in accomplishing its various homeland security missions. Rescue 21 towers and command centers are also designed to accommodate additional sensors and command and control equipment, which will deliver new and cost-effective capabilities to the Coast Guard’s overarching mission.

Rescue 21 by the numbers:

  • Sector San Juan comprises five communication towers, one station and one command and control center.
  • The 32nd Rescue 21 sector to go operational, Sector San Juan adds approximately 1,000 miles to the system’s nationwide coverage.
  • There are currently 245 towers in use throughout the national Rescue 21 system.
  • Rescue 21 monitors more than 41,700 miles of U.S. coastline.

Naval Today Staff, May 30, 2012; Image: General Dynamics