The Coast Guard has withdrawn a proposal to conduct live ammunition gunship training at 34 sites on Lake Michigan, but officials say they will look at others ways to complete that training. Capt. Bruce Jones is the commander of the Great Lakes Sector. He says the Coast Guard will consider other options, such as reducing the number of proposed testing sites or sending personnel to other locations for testing.
The Coast Guard abandoned its proposal on Monday, after several public hearings showed a great deal of concern about live fire exercises and the potential impact on safety and the environment. Capt. Jones says they'll try to address those concerns when developing a new proposal, which they hope to bring back for more public hearings in the coming months.
The live fire exercises on the water are part of Homeland Security and training requirements for the Coast Guard. Capt. Jones says they only need to be conducted about twice a year. He says allowing them on Lake Michigan allows the Coast Guard to complete its training needs, while still being able to respond to any emergency situations.