VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. — The crew of the USCGC Dependable (WMEC 626) returned to their homeport in Virginia Beach Thursday following a 50-day maritime safety and security patrol in the Florida Straits and Windward Pass.
In support of Homeland Security Task Force – Southeast and Operation Vigilant Sentry in the Seventh Coast Guard District’s area of responsibility, Dependable’s crew conducted multiple interdiction evolutions and collaborated with other Coast Guard cutters and task force aircraft to continue the critical mission of maintaining safety at sea.
During the patrol, Dependable’s crew processed, cared for and repatriated approximately 500 migrants. While operating in the Florida Straits, Dependable worked with other law enforcement entities, including Customs and Border Protection and the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission to detect, deter and intercept unsafe and illegal ventures bound for the United States.
“The crew has been training to conduct migrant interdiction operations since July 2022,” said Lt. Cmdr. Dana Prefer, Dependable’s executive officer. “In preparation for the recent uptick in migration ventures, we worked hard to qualify over 50 crew members to stand watch and care for the migrants embarked onboard the cutter. The training and preparation paid off as it was truly a team effort to interdict, process and care for just about 500 migrants throughout our patrol.”
Dependable is a 210-foot Reliance-class medium endurance cutter with a crew of 70. The cutter’s primary missions include counter drug operations, migrant interdiction, enforcement of federal fishery laws, and search and rescue in support of Coast Guard operations throughout the Western Hemisphere.