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Dangers in Coast Guard
Last Post 22 Apr 2019 10:00 AM by sardaddy. 14 Replies.
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Charles LUser is Offline
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Charles L

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04 Jun 2012 05:13 PM
    Hi. I'm considering joining the Coast Guard, but first I had to discuss it with my partner. After a discussion, I finally got through to him, but he's now concerned about my safety, and that brings me here. I wanted to ask experienced Coast Guard members, what are some of the dangers that you face? And how often do you face dangers?
    ejhcougarUser is Offline
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    ejhcougar

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    04 Jun 2012 06:48 PM
    The potential for injury exists in any work environment. However, with that said, this is the safest job I've ever had. Remember though, we operate in harsh environments doing things we advise others not to. Yes there are dangers, however you will be properly trained to handle these dangers. In my opinion, the benfits FAR out weigh the risk. I was in the Bering Sea for a year and it gets pretty vicious. You have to trust your shipmates and they have to trust you. Also, now in aviation, I have a whole new set of dangers to face. Again, the Coast Guard has trained me to the best of their ability to handle said environment.
    CoochUser is Offline
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    04 Jun 2012 07:26 PM
    The thing about the dangerous situations, is that the CG invests a lot of time and money into the training that we receive so that we can safely get through those situations. Mishaps still happen unfortunately, because there is a certain level of inherent danger in the military, but for the most part we are in the safest possible situation. I hope that helps.
    You can meet the standard, or you can set the standard. It's your choice.
    southern118User is Offline
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    04 Jun 2012 07:33 PM
    I'm not going to say a MST is a safe job. I am exposed to different chemicals. I have had two fatalities in places I have been in within 5 days. It is just the nature of the job. You have the same thing in other jibs in the coast guard just different types of risk. We have a lot of safety training and equipment to keep us safe
    FloridaGirlUser is Offline
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    04 Jun 2012 08:08 PM
    Heck just this weekend we had someone that got hurt pretty badly (he'll live, but he now has some parts missing, unfortunately). Accidents happen. But as other have said, we try to minimize the risk.
    Honor: if you need it defined, you don’t have it.
    Charles LUser is Offline
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    Charles L

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    04 Jun 2012 08:28 PM
    Thank you guys very much. Knowing that I'd be trained to handle dangerous situations seems to have calmed him down about it.
    NargilFenrisUser is Offline
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    05 Jun 2012 09:17 AM
    With proper training and safety equipment most risks are minimized. The Coast Guard does a lot to keep its members safe but a lot of the jobs are still dangerous. Thats why in boot camp they put so much stress on attention to details.
    If you were hoping for the A Team you will be sorry to know you got the F Troop.
    KDUser is Offline
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    06 Jun 2012 10:42 PM
    My son is CG, my husband is law enforcement. I worry way more about my husband than my son. I know there are risks, but there are in many careers--there are a lot of loggers in my town with damaged parts, and CalTrans workers get run over pretty regularly. :/

    The recruiter that worked with my son acknowledged the risks, but also clarified that he has seen way more coasties lost to car accidents than line-of-duty incidents. He actually said, "If he makes it to the boat, he'll likely be just fine."
    srf13User is Offline
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    srf13

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    07 Jun 2012 06:05 AM
    [quote what are some of the dangers that you face?]

    Drowning probably ranks up there. I'm all set though, I'm 6 feet tall.

    ClaytonRUser is Offline
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    07 Jun 2012 06:17 AM
    Charles,

    I am in law enforcement, and am beginning the process to join the reserves. I have had the "dangers" talk with many people, including my wife, who has given me her blessing to pursue whatever I choose, whether it be the sheriff's department I'm in now, or applying for patrol with the LAPD, or active duty in the Coast Guard, or extra deployments once I'm in the Reserve.

    For us(my wife and I), it all comes down to one thing...each dangerous situation has two possible outcomes...life, or death. There's no getting around that. And when it comes down to it, you have a 50% chance either way. Whether it be on a boat or cutter, in a police car, whether I'm dealing with an inmate in my jail in Podunk Nevada, or involved in a shooting on the streets of Los Angeles, it will be that same 50% chance of living or dying. It doesn't matter what I'm exposed to, I'll still have the same chances. Yes, there are situations more dangerous than others. Working on shore at a station, you'll experience less danger than you will doing boardings and counter-narcotics work, but again...each situation will still be that 50%.

    And to close...my first training officer here in the jail taught me one thing that always stuck with me: No matter what, we'll always win. I've taken that and applied it to everything I encounter, and will continue to do so. I've already made the decision that if my reserve unit gets deployed near a combat zone, my only option is to come back home alive.

    /soapbox
    KDUser is Offline
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    KD

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    07 Jun 2012 10:10 AM
    ClaytonR, I've been married to LE for 25 years now. The friend who taught me how to live as a cop's wife put it this way: Yes, I could worry about him every time he walks out the door until he's ready to retire! And then he could slip on a banana peel in the kitchen and break his neck the day after he retires...so what would be the point of ruining all those days in between?
    Rachel123User is Offline
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    19 Apr 2019 04:12 PM
    Hi, i know this question is not relative to the dangers of being in the coast guard, but i just wanted to ask. How you you go about joining if your not from America, or do not have a citizenship, can you be sponsored in order to get a citizenship in the coast guard? I'm Irish and would really love to join. We have a coast guard here called the Royal National Lifeboat Institution or RNLI. It is voluntary and non government funded. So it is not a permanent job, which i would like. I would love your feedback on the topic. Thanks.
    reiss_pieces11User is Offline
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    reiss_pieces11

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    19 Apr 2019 05:24 PM
    Hi Rachel, there may be people on here that could help you out. However, this topic is not relevant to your question (as you mentioned). Start your own topic and I’m sure somebody could try to help you out. Maybe call it “Enlisting from a Different Country”.
    Keep Calm and Love a Coastie!
    nenglandUser is Offline
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    nengland

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    20 Apr 2019 09:23 AM
    My guess is that most loss of life occurs by either suicide or motorcycle accidents. Be mindful, wear a helmet, and you'll probably be ok.
    sardaddyUser is Offline
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    sardaddy

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    22 Apr 2019 10:00 AM
    Here's another way to look at it:

    Dangers-frequency:
    Going head to head with someone traveling 55 mph or more, who may or may not be paying full attention to their surroundings, and attempting to clear each other at a distance closer than the Blue Angels in formation - Daily.
    Getting into a serious situation that requires use of my superior skill at work- occasionally.

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