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OR&R Prepares U.S. Coast Guard for Shoreline Cleanups

APRIL 1, 2024 — The Emergency Response Division of NOAA’s Office of Response and Restoration (OR&R), provided three days of Shoreline Cleanup Assessment Technique (SCAT) training for the U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) Sector Charleston on March 19-21, 2024. 

A student shown writing notes on shoreline conditions on a SCAT form as part of participation in NOAA’s SCAT training.
A student participating in NOAA’s SCAT training notes down shoreline conditions on a SCAT form.

Conducted around the country, SCAT training is typically provided 8-10 times per year in different locations to better prepare USCG responders and their state, federal and industry partners. SCAT classes train responders to assess shoreline impacts, then evaluate and recommend a range of cleanup technique options designed to help impacted resources recover in the event of an oil spill. The training that NOAA provides is a key part of the USCG response program’s basic knowledge and qualification requirements for their lead responders. Including the other partners in this training helps to ensure that when the time comes, all stakeholders are able to understand common techniques, environmental trade-offs, and benefits in a similar way, leading to more effective and consensus-based response actions.

Local media outlets were invited to attend the training in Charleston, which resulted in sharing awareness of this training and preparedness activity with the local and regional communities. This will pay valuable dividends in the event that a spill does occur. The enhanced relationships developed with the media and other local interests will foster more open communications and trust between the response community and the public.

Full-scale oil spill exercises are planned later this year for Sector Charleston, as well as their Marine Safety Unit in Savannah, Georgia, that will incorporate the SCAT training knowledge into their exercise objectives.

Last updated Friday, April 5, 2024 2:07pm PDT