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USCG use flares in rescue exercise

Orange flare

US Coast Guards have used flares in a helicopter search and rescue demonstration.

The exercise at Harbour Town, Hilton Head Island, South Carolina, marked Coast Guard Appreciation Day at the end of March.

The US Coast Guard Air Station Savannah demonstrated how they rescued someone in distress on the water, using an orange flare.

John Handfield, Commander of Hilton Head/Bluffton Flotilla 10-11, says the team practices these rescues a few times a week.

A basket is lowered and brought up to the helicopter. "It’s not a quick process for the pilots who maneuver and hover, that in of itself is challenging," the Flotilla Commander told Fox28.

They set off an orange flare where the victim is so they can better see them from above.

"That’s what they would use, it’s very hard, especially at night, to see somebody in the water," says John Handfield.

People often think of the Coast Guard stepping in for hurricanes or major flood storms, but it’s much more than that. "Dedicated, committed and they’re out there 24/7.”

The image is a screengrab from a video of the display.
Apr 09, 2019