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A Dauntless Patrol Craft from Inshore Boat Unit 13 makes a hard to starboard turn in Busan Harbor during training Tuesday. The boat intercepts threats to the harbor, defends friendly boats and conducts surveillance to provide waterborne portside security.
A Dauntless Patrol Craft from Inshore Boat Unit 13 makes a hard to starboard turn in Busan Harbor during training Tuesday. The boat intercepts threats to the harbor, defends friendly boats and conducts surveillance to provide waterborne portside security. (Jimmy Norris / S&S)
A Dauntless Patrol Craft from Inshore Boat Unit 13 makes a hard to starboard turn in Busan Harbor during training Tuesday. The boat intercepts threats to the harbor, defends friendly boats and conducts surveillance to provide waterborne portside security.
A Dauntless Patrol Craft from Inshore Boat Unit 13 makes a hard to starboard turn in Busan Harbor during training Tuesday. The boat intercepts threats to the harbor, defends friendly boats and conducts surveillance to provide waterborne portside security. (Jimmy Norris / S&S)
Dauntless Patrol Craft from Inshore Boat Units 11 and 13 pass a large ferry in Busan Harbor during a training exercise Tuesday.
Dauntless Patrol Craft from Inshore Boat Units 11 and 13 pass a large ferry in Busan Harbor during a training exercise Tuesday. (Jimmy Norris / S&S)
Chief Petty Officer Steve Colley, left, coordinates the movement of a formation of multiple Dauntless Patrol Craft in Busan Harbor during a training exercise Tuesday while Petty Officer 1st Class Rick Chavez controls the craft.
Chief Petty Officer Steve Colley, left, coordinates the movement of a formation of multiple Dauntless Patrol Craft in Busan Harbor during a training exercise Tuesday while Petty Officer 1st Class Rick Chavez controls the craft. (Jimmy Norris / S&S)
(Clockwise from left front) Coast Guard Petty Officer 1st Class Todd Wimmer, Navy Petty Officer 1st Class John Little, Coast Guard Petty Officer 3rd Class Eric Moss and Navy Petty Office 1st Class Kevin Terney lift simulated casualty Coast Guard Petty Officer 1st Class Tracy Kok during a training exercise Tuesday in Busan.
(Clockwise from left front) Coast Guard Petty Officer 1st Class Todd Wimmer, Navy Petty Officer 1st Class John Little, Coast Guard Petty Officer 3rd Class Eric Moss and Navy Petty Office 1st Class Kevin Terney lift simulated casualty Coast Guard Petty Officer 1st Class Tracy Kok during a training exercise Tuesday in Busan. (Jimmy Norris / S&S)

BUSAN, South Korea — U.S. and South Korean sailors and Coast Guardsmen joined forces this week to conduct harbor defense training as part of Foal Eagle exercises.

The exercise began Tuesday when U.S. sailors from Mobile Inshore Undersea Warfare Unit 110 picked up signals that an unknown vessel was entering Busan Harbor, launching U.S. Naval Coastal Warfare Squadron 33 and South Korea’s 308th Early Warning Squadron into action.

Sonobuoys equipped with passive sonar and hydrophones fed information to computer screens and listening equipment on Busan’s Pier 8 and Cho-do island, headquarters for the 308th.

Technicians deciphered what looked like a series of random lines displayed on the computer screens to identify the type of craft that had breached the harbor and relayed the information to the Inshore Boat Units 11 and 13.

Those units quickly moved out in their Dauntless patrol craft, 34-foot boats armed with M-240 machine guns and the ability to move at high speeds.

In this case, they discovered a semi-submersible cigarette boat tasked with conducting surveillance on South Korea’s 3rd Fleet Base.

Organizers said the exercise was the first of a series of planned naval exercises between the countries.

Falling under Naval Coastal Warfare Squadron 33 were inshore boat units from Everett, Wash., and Portland, Ore.; Mobile Security Detachment 5 from Guam; and Port Security Unit 313, a Coast Guard reserve unit from Tacoma, Wash.

Capt. Guy Bony, warfare squadron commodore, said the U.S. forces provided added capability for detecting underwater threats to Busan Harbor.

“I would not say we’re essential,” he added, saying the South Koreans are “very capable of defending this harbor themselves.”

Lt. Cmdr. Jonathan Puskas, commander of Inshore Boat Unit 13, said Foal Eagle also tested the logistical ability of units involved to move their equipment and crews into South Korea quickly and safely.

For the overall warfare squadron, that meant seven boats, 44 tents, numerous vehicles and more than 300 people.

And coordinating active-duty and Reserve U.S. Navy and Coast Guard units — many of whom have never worked together before — while working with their South Korean counterparts also was a challenge.

“It’s a lot like an emergency room,” said Squadron 33 spokesman Coast Guard Lt. Corr Pearce.

“It looks like chaos if you just peek in the door, but there’s really a lot of coordination going on.”

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