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Commanding Officer
Marine Safety Unit Portland
US Coast Guard
6767 N. Basin Ave.
Portland, OR 97217-3992
Tel: (503) 240-9310

MSU Portland

Environmental Response: Reporting Spills

The National Response Center (NRC) is our main reporting agency.  Whether it’s for suspected terrorist activity, or and observed oil sheen on the water, the National Response Center takes the initial reports and informs every operational agency that has jurisdiction over each event. 

 To make a report to the NRC, click here, or Call 1-800-424-8802

Background of the NRC

The primary function of the National Response Center is to serve as the sole national point of contact for reporting all oil, chemical, radiological, biological, and etiological discharges into the environment anywhere in the United States and its territories. In addition to gathering and distributing spill data for Federal On-Scene Coordinators and serving as the communications and operations center for the National Response Team, the NRC maintains agreements with a variety of federal entities to make additional notifications regarding incidents meeting established trigger criteria. The NRC also takes Terrorist/Suspicious Activity Reports and Maritime Security Breach Reports. Details on the NRC organization and specific responsibilities can be found in the National Oil and Hazardous Substances Pollution Contingency Plan while a simplified discussion of NRC tasking is outlined below.

On behalf of the Department of Homeland Security and the United States Coast Guard, the National Response Center:

On behalf of other Federal Agencies, the NRC provides the following services to enhance the Federal Response System:

Additionally, the NRC is the contact point for activation of the National Response Team and provides facilities for the NRT to use in coordinating a national response action when required.

The NRC is staffed by Coast Guard personnel who maintain a 24 hour per day, 365 day per year telephone watch. NRC Watch Standers enter telephonic reports of pollution incidents into the Incident Reporting Information System (IRIS) and immediately relay each report to the pre-designated Federal On-Scene Coordinator (FOSC). The IRIS system was designed and developed by the Space and Naval Warfare Systems Center Charleston, National Capital Region and is central to all NRC operations.  The NRC also provides emergency response support to the FOSCs and has the ability to quickly place them in direct contact with expert technical support centers (ATSDR, CDC, CHEMTREC) if needed. 

The data that is collected by the NRC is made available to the general public under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) and can be queried on-line via our web site.  For written requests, please send your correspondence to the following address;

United States Coast Guard (CG-612)
2100 2nd Street, SW
Washington, D.C. 20593-0001

Last Modified 1/12/2016