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What is a navigation response team?

Navigation response teams maintain emergency readiness while checking chart accuracy in changing ports and harbors.

navigation response team boat

A NOAA Navigation Response Team vessel. These boats feature both depth-finding and sidescan sonar systems for detecting dangerous obstructions on the ocean floor.

NOAA's navigation response teams, part of the Office of Coast Survey, survey the seafloor in ports and harbors that have undergone infrastructure updates, shoreline alterations, or seafloor changes. They measure depths and look for underwater hazards that could endanger vessels, to update nautical charts for commercial and recreational mariners.

Coast Survey strategically places navigation teams around the country. While 80 percent of their time is spent acquiring data for chart updates, they must also maintain a state of readiness for rapid mobilization for response after emergencies.