Coast Survey’s six mobile navigation response teams (NRT) conduct hydrographic surveys to update charts for 175 major U.S. ports. They remain on call to respond to emergencies, speeding the resumption of shipping after storms, and protecting life and property from underwater dangers to navigation.
Working with Coast Survey’s regional navigation managers, the teams re-measure the depths of changing seafloors and search for underwater dangers to navigation that could slow down or halt ocean shipping. They provide time-sensitive information to the U.S. Coast Guard or port officials, and transmit data to NOAA cartographers for updating Coast Survey’s suite of navigational charts.
Requesting NRT assistance
These hydrographic field units are equipped with trailer-able survey launches. All teams have side-scan sonar and several teams have multibeam sonar to generate three-dimensional views of what lies below the surface.
Requests for a NOAA navigation response team originate from the U.S. Coast Guard Captain of the Port, state pilot association, port authority, or U.S. Army Corps of Engineers office. Requesters work with navigation managers to identify mission objectives and define the deliverable products.