Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
A coast guard is an organization devoted to saving the lives of shipwrecked mariners or people in danger at sea. In some countries it is part of the military. In other countries it is a civilian or even volunteer organization. Most coast guards operate ships and aircraft including helicopters and seaplanes for this purpose.
Coast guards also enforce maritime law, maintain aids to navigation such as beacons and buoys, and provide other services for the benefit of mariners. Most coast guards are run on military lines and serve as an auxiliary to the national navy. During wartime coast guards are responsible for harbour defense, port security, naval counterintelligence and coastal patrols.
National coast guards
In the United States, the United States Coast Guard is a military service under the United States Department of Homeland Security in peacetime. In wartime the Coast Guard reports to the Secretary of the Navy but does not become part of the United States Navy; however, its boats and cutters are integrated into U.S. military operations. The U.S. Coast Guard Academy is located in New London, Connecticut.
In India, the Coast Guard is a para-military unit. It secures the country's coast, carries rescues and aids shipping.
In the United Kingdom coastguard functions are split between three organisations: HM Coastguard deals with rescue co-ordination and carries out land-based rescues, Trinity House maintains buoys and lighthouses and the Royal National Lifeboat Institution carries out rescues from the sea, assisted by Royal Air Force air-sea rescue helicopters when necessary.
In Singapore, the coast guard, comes under the command of the Singapore Police Force. Hence, it is named as Police Coast Guard (PCG)
- Australia - two rival privately-run volunteer Coast Guard organizations exist:
- Canada- Canadian Coast Guard
- Japan - Japan Coast Guard (ex Maritime Safety Agency)
- United Kingdom - RNLI
- United States - United States Coast Guard
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