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Press Release | March 30, 2023

USCGC Northland returns home following 62-day Florida Straits and Windward Passage patrol

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PORTSMOUTH, Va. — The crew of the USCGC Northland (WMEC 904) returned to their home port in Portsmouth, Thursday, following a 62-day maritime safety and security patrol in the Florida Straits and Windward Passage.

Patrolling in support of Homeland Security Task Force – Southeast and Operation Vigilant Sentry in the Seventh Coast Guard District’s area of responsibility, Northland’s crew conducted maritime safety and security missions while working to detect, deter and intercept unsafe and illegal maritime migration ventures bound for the United States.

Northland’s crew interdicted multiple unsafe and overloaded migrant vessels during the patrol, providing food, water, shelter and medical aid to 515 migrants. In one case, Northland partnered with additional Coast Guard air and surface assets to intercept an overloaded, tugboat-style vessel attempting to reach the United States. In another case, Northland was one of the primary assets to respond to a report of multiple people in the water just south of Key West, Florida, rescuing 27 migrants.

“I am immensely proud of the Northland crew,” said Cmdr. Andrew Dennelly, commanding officer of Northland. “Day in and day out, the crew demonstrated they are always ready to deliver exceptional service to the nation. Their inspirational vigilance, professionalism and actions saved hundreds of lives.”

Northland is a 270-foot, Famous-class medium endurance cutter. Its primary missions include law enforcement, search and rescue, drug interdiction, fisheries enforcement, migrant interdiction, homeland security, international training, defense and humanitarian operations. Northland patrols the offshore waters from Maine to Florida, the Gulf of Mexico, the Eastern Pacific and the Caribbean Sea.

For information on how to join the U.S. Coast Guard, visit to learn more about active duty and reserve officer and enlisted opportunities. Information on how to apply the U.S. Coast Guard Academy can be found here.