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Mar 09 2010
Construction Academy Comes to Kodiak
Tuesday, 09 March 2010

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            A dream opportunity will come true for a group of future construction workers in Kodiak. Later this month a four-week intensive workshop will teach the basics of the trade to 15 qualifying individuals.

            The free program is called the "Kodiak Regional Construction Academy" and will be taught by local construction professionals. According to the Job Center's Nicola Belisle. the project is the result of a long-time collaborative effort.

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Mar 09 2010
Women's Bay VFD Receives New Wildland Fire Truck
Tuesday, 09 March 2010

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            The Women's Bay Volunteer Fire Department has a new quick-response wildland fire truck, thanks to a deal with the Alaska State Division of Forestry. The vehicle, built on a one-ton pickup truck chassis, is designed to get into remote and off-road areas first to allow firefighters knock down fires quickly, according to Forestry officials Ken Crookshanks and Darren Rathman.

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Mar 08 2010
Touring the USCG Ice-Breaker Polar Sea
Monday, 08 March 2010

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              The Coast Guard ice-breaker "Polar Sea" docked in Kodiak last week on its way to a scientific mission in the Bering Sea. The 399 foot-long vessel docked at Pier Two just ahead of the winter storm that hit Thursday night.

The Polar Sea's missions include scientific and logistical support for U.S. interests in both polar regions. Polar Sea is designed to move through six feet of ice at a speed of three knots. The Polar Sea and its sister ship Polar Star are the world's most powerful non-nuclear ice-breakers. The cutter routinely operates in the Bering Sea, Chukchi Sea, the Arctic Ocean, the Southern Ocean, and Antarctica.

From its home port in Seattle, the thirteen thousand, five hundred-ton cutter stopped in Kodiak to pick up the scientists who will conduct a study of the Bering Sea ecosystem from aboard the ship. The two-month-long  operation is part of a six year study that's supported by the National Science Foundation and the North Pacific Research Board.

While awaiting the embarkment of the scientists, the Polar Sea was opened to Kodiak residents for tours.

The Polar Sea's public affairs officer is Lieutenant J.G. Emily Holt who escorted KMXT's Diana Gish onboard. Holt said that when she joined the Coast Guard, she didn't picture herself spending months at a time on a ship in the world's coldest places.

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Mar 08 2010
Whiteout in Kodiak; Blizzard Conditions Until 4 p.m.
Monday, 08 March 2010

100308.blizzardsatpic.jpgJay Barrett/KMXT

            Kodiak Island is under a blizzard warning until at least 4 p.m. this afternoon. The National Weather Service updated the storm to a warning at 9 a.m. and reissued the bulletin just a half-hour ago. Whiteout conditions have been widely reported around Kodiak City and Police Chief T.C. Kamai said accident and stranding reports are already rolling in.

            He emphasized motorists should not drive unless absolutely necessary:

            The blizzard, which is also affecting the Kenai Peninsula and Prince William Sound, is the result of a large low pressure system skirting the east side of Kodiak Island, drawing down colder air from the mainland. Northwest winds 35 to 50 miles per hour with gusts to 65 are forecast, and whiteout conditions in snow and blowing snow can be expected. Drifting snow on roadways may make them impassible.

 
Mar 08 2010
Coast Guard Contracting Commercial Helocopter Services
Monday, 08 March 2010

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            The U.S. Coast Guard has put out a request for bids to provide contract helicopter services based on Kodiak Island. The on-call service isn't to supplement the air station's search and rescue choppers, but rather to allow them to remain available for SAR missions.

            Lieutenant Commander Greg Dykes, based in Juneau, is the executive officer for the Rescue 21 Project. He said hiring a commercial helicopter service is the best way to do various flying jobs in support of the program while not incurring the expense of using the Jayhawk and Dolphin helicopters at Air Station Kodiak as delivery vehicles.

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