MSSTs were created under the Maritime Transportation Security Act (MTSA) 2002, in direct response to the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11, 2001, and are a part of the Department of Homeland Security's layered strategy directed at protecting our seaports and waterways.
MSSTs Provide waterborne and a modest level of shoreside antiterrorism force protection for strategic shipping, high interest vessels and critical infrastructure.
MSSTs are a quick response force capable of rapid, nationwide deployment via air, ground or sea transportation in response to changing threat conditions and evolving Maritime Homeland Security (MHS) mission requirements. Multi-mission capability facilitates augmentation for other selected Coast Guard missions.
Personnel receive training in Advanced Tactical Boat Operations and Anti-terrorism/Force protection at the Special Missions Training Center located at Camp Lejeune , N.C.
Modeled after the Port Security Unit (PSU) and Law Enforcement Detachment (LEDET) programs, MSSTs provide a complementary non-redundant capability designed to close critical security gaps in our nations strategic seaports. Teams are staffed to support continuous law enforcement operations both ashore and afloat. In addition, MSSTs:
Jointly staffed to maximize effectiveness executing Port, Waterways, and Coastal Security (PWCS) operations (enforce security zones, port state control boardings, protection of military outloads and major marine events, augment shoreside security at waterfront facilities, detect WMD weapons/agents, and participate in port level antiterrorism exercises).
Provide enhanced port safety and security and law enforcement capabilities to the economic or military significant port where they are based.
Deploy in support of National Special Security Events (NSSEs) requiring Coast Guard presence, such as OpSail, Olympics, Republican & Democratic National Conventions, major disasters or storm recovery operations.
Prototype/employ specialized capabilities to enhance mission performance (K-9 program, radiation detectors, dive program, vertical insertion, running gear entangling systems, less –than-lethal weapons, etc).
Deploy on board cutters and other naval vessels for port safety and security, drug law enforcement, migrant interdiction or other maritime homeland security mission requirements.
Support Naval Coastal Warfare requirements during Homeland Defense (HLD) and in accordance with long standing agreements with DOD and the Combatant Commanders (protect strategic shipping, major naval combatants and critical infrastructure at home and abroad)
Maritime interdiction and law enforcement
Vertical Insertion (commonly referred to as Fast Roping)
Search and Rescue (limited)
Underwater Port Security
Canine Handling Teams (Explosives Detection)
Tactical Boat Operations NCW boat tactics
Non Permissive Compliant Boarding capability
MSST 91101 -- Seattle (Established 2002)
MSST 91102 -- Chesapeake, Va. (Established 2002)
MSST 91103 -- Los Angeles/Long Beach (Established 2002)
MSST 91104 -- Houston/Galveston (Established 2002)
MSST 91105 -- San Francisco (Established 2003)
MSST 91106 -- Ft. Wadsworth, NY (Established 2003)
MSST 91107 -- Honolulu, HI (Established 2005)
MSST 91108 -- St. Marys, Ga. (Established 2003)
MSST 91109 -- San Diego, CA (Established 2005)
MSST 91110 -- Boston, MA (Established 2003)
MSST 91111 -- Anchorage (Established 2004)
MSST 91112 -- New Orleans (Established 2004)
MSST 91114 -- Miami, FL (Established 2005)
Each MSST has 75 active duty personnel