SANTA RITA, Guam — The U.S. Coast Guard is searching for the origin of a single red flare near Pago Bay, Guam, sighted on Wednesday, Oct. 12, 2022.
Response crews have seen no signs of distress, and there are no active reports of missing or overdue people.
Anyone with information about the flare or who may be recently missing friends or family in the vicinity of Pago Bay should call the U.S. Coast Guard Joint Sub-center at (671) 355-4824.
Currently searching is the USCGC Frederick Hatch (WPC 1143) crew.
JRSC Guam watchstanders received two reports of a red-orange flare in the direction of the Pago Bay lookout platform just before 9 p.m. Guam Fire Rescue also received a report from a different reporting source that saw the same flare in the same area.
JRSC Guam watchstanders issued an Urgent Marine Information Broadcast to share details and seek additional information. They also briefed the duty crew at U.S. Coast Guard Station Apra Harbor. A station 45-foot Response Boat-Medium crew launched and arrived on the scene at 3:30 a.m. Thursday and began searching.
Helicopter Sea Combat Squadron 25 provided support by diverting an MH-60 Sea Hawk expeditionary helicopter crew from a training mission overnight who completed an hour and a half of search along the shoreline of Pago Bay and out to two miles before returning to base for fuel and crew rest.
Guam Fire Rescue searched with two rescue units, and an engine crew conducted shoreline searches and searches out to the reef line with jet skis.
The Frederick Hatch crew was diverted from operations off Saipan, searching overnight and at first light.
The weather forecast reports light to moderate rain with 4 to 6 miles of visibility. A high surf advisory and a high surf warning are in effect for the east-facing shores of Guam.
The U.S. Coast Guard takes every reported flare seriously and responds. If you accidentally light off a flare or are testing or expending expired flares, please call JRSC Guam at (671) 355-4824 to report their use at no penalty. This action can prevent unnecessary searches and keep response crews fresh for emergent cases.