Coast Guard Cutter Commander Relieved Of Duties

The commanding officer of a Coast Guard cutter here in North Carolina has been temporarily relieved of his command after his ship ran aground.

The Coast Guard says Commander Harry Schmidt was the commanding officer for the Wilmington-based cutter Diligence. The 210-foot cutter is currently on patrol in the Caribbean.

The Coast Guard says it has lost confidence in Schmidt's ability to command after the cutter was grounded last month.

Commander Teri Jordon has assumed temporary command of the Diligence while Schmidt has been temporarily assigned to Coast Guard District 7, which is in Miami, pending final results of an investigation.

Schmidt is a Chicago native and a 1991 graduate of the U.S. Coast Guard Academy.

As for the grounding itself, the Coast Guard told WITN that damage to the cutter was minimal and it was able to continue on its patrol. But they would not release exactly when or where the grounding took place.

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