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Surface Operations

Resource Websites

Surface Program Manuals                          National Site

About Surface Operations

Surface operations and the Boat Crew Training Program are at the heart of most Auxiliary flotilla activities. Multi-mission patrols are carried out by trained and certified coxswains and crew, under U.S. Coast Guard-issued orders using Coast Guard-approved vessels (boats) or "facilities" offered for use by Auxiliary members.

Since the founding of the Auxiliary in 1939, and particularly since the events of September 11, 2001, Auxiliary surface operations have played a key role in substantially augmenting the U.S. Coast Guard's visibility and support of recreational boating safety.


The Surface Operations programs are among the most extensive in the Auxiliary:

  • Promote safe boating;
  • Search and Rescue;
  • Regatta or marine event support;
  • Render assistance to distressed persons or vessels ;
  • Ports, waterways, and coastal security; safety and security zones;
  • Aids to navigation verification, especially private aids;
  • Chart updating;
  • Bridge survey support and augmentation;
  • Marine environmental protection;
  • Waterways management support;
  • Boat crew and coxswain training, qualification, and currency maintenance.
Daniel J. Dirkes, DSO-OP
Daniel J. Dirkes, DSO-OP


  • Daniel J. Dirkes, DSO-OP
  • Michael Donovan Bozarth, ADSO-OP
  • Thomas Pelosi, ADSO-OP
  • (As of 19 Sep 2019 03:19:35 PDT)


The mission of Auxiliary operations is to provide operational, logistics, and training support to appropriate Coast Guard programs. Title 14 of the U.S. Code, § 826 and 831 authorize the Coast Guard to utilize suitably trained Auxiliarists and Auxiliary facilities to carry out this mission.