An official website of the United States government
Here's how you know
A .mil website belongs to an official U.S. Department of Defense organization in the United States.
A lock (lock ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .mil website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

Press Release | Dec. 10, 2023

U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Waesche returns home after 89-day counternarcotics patrol in Eastern Pacific Ocean

ALAMEDA, Calif. — Coast Guard Cutter Waesche (WMSL 751) and crew returned to homeport, Saturday, following an 89-day counternarcotics patrol in the Eastern Pacific Ocean.

The 418-foot national security cutter and its crew patrolled more than 19,750 nautical miles conducting law enforcement and search and rescue operations in international waters off Central and South America.

Waesche deployed with a Jacksonville, Florida, based Helicopter Interdiction Tactical Squadron (HITRON) MH-65 Dolphin helicopter and aircrew, members from Law Enforcement Detachment (LEDET) 101 and 102, and contractors who flew Scan Eagle, an advanced unmanned aircraft system.While conducting flight operations with Air Station San Diego off the coast of San Diego, Waesche's crew received notification from of a mariner 300 nautical miles west of San Diego aboard a disabled sailing vessel with no food in 8-10 foot seas. Waesche diverted from its position to the disabled sailing vessel and launched its Over-The-Horizon (OTH) small boat crew to rescue the survivor and bring him aboard.

Waesche participated in San Francisco Fleet Week 2023, hosting several days of public tours and representing the service during the Parade of Ships event, which involved formation maneuvering with U.S. Navy vessels and rendering honors to the Secretary of the Navy in a pass-in-review.

After departing San Francisco, Waesche began its counternarcotics patrol in the Eastern Pacific, and interdicted five smuggling vessels operating in international waters, deploying the cutter’s Over-the-Horizon (OTH) small boats with boarding teams, the Scan Eagle drone, and a helicopter with a precision marksman. Waesche’s last interdiction was a self-propelled semi-submersible, resulting in the seizure of 2,510 kgs of cocaine.Waesche’s crew offloaded more than 18,000 pounds of cocaine in San Diego, Wednesday, which included two seizures of drug-smuggling vessels made by U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Active's crew.

Waesche is the second Legend-class cutter of the U.S. Coast Guard and is homeported at Coast Guard Island in Alameda, CA. Waesche is 418-feet long with a top speed of 28 knots and a range of 12,000 nautical miles. It is equipped with a flight deck and hangars capable of housing two multi-mission helicopters and is outfitted with the most advanced command, control, and communications equipment.