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Lieutenant Pat Tornell and Lieutenant Bob Dixon are sworn into the United States Coast Guard Air Patrol, West Coast division. Pat, who is a daredevil pilot and hates to follow rules, now works with his former rival from school, Lieutenant Dan Conlon, who is devoted to the service. Pat immediately starts flirting with Dan's beautiful girl friend, Anne Blane. Former ace pilot Calico Smith, who has grounded himself, acts as interference between Pat and Dan. When Commander Moseley is criticized for having allowed fur smugglers to elude the Coast Guard, he rallies his men and sends them out to bring the smugglers in. Dixon is shot in the attempt, and goes down with his plane. This prompts the Coast Guard to outfit the planes with machine guns, and during gunning practise, Pat makes daredevil maneuvers with his plane. He is reprimanded by Moseley, who warns both he and Dan to end their rivalry, but Pat persists in taunting Dan and pursuing Anne. On another patrol, Dan is shot, but is able to shoot down a smuggler's plane. On the day that Anne is expected to return from a short trip, Pat is assigned to be officer of the day, and in an apparent gesture of friendship, tells Dan that he can leave his post early. Meanwhile, Pat skywrites a welcome home message to Anne over her ship, and then buzzes the ship, causing the captain to call Moseley and complain about endangerment. Moseley is losing his patience with Pat's antics, and hoping the shock will help reform him, asks Pat to resign. Pat takes this seriously, however, and quits the force. He begins flying for the smugglers and continues to pursue Anne, who believes that he is actually working undercover on a personal mission to help the Coast Guard. Pat and Anne are kidnapped, and the smugglers take them to their hideout, a shack on the beach about twenty-five miles away from the Coast Guard station. Anne, whom Dan has taught to use a short-wave radio, manages to get loose from her restraints and calls Dan, alerting him to their location. Dan flies out to rescue her, and Calico follows, determined to help. When Dan arrives, the smugglers are on a boat off the beach, and fire upon him, until they wound him in the leg and explode his plane. He tells Pat and Anne to escape in Pat's plane, but Anne vows to stay by Dan, and Pat takes off. Calico arrives to help the fight. In the air, Pat decides that fighting for the service is honorable after all, and after sending a farewell message to Anne, sends his plane directly into the smugglers' ship, destroying the ship, the smugglers, his plane and himself.