For a number of years now the IMRF have been working with the IMO to help develop maritime SAR capability in North and West Africa.
The scope of the SAR training was expanded in May 2014 with the delivery of the SAR Management Course to participants from COTE D'IVOIRE, GHANA, GUINEA, LIBERIA and SEIRRA LEONE.
Funding provided by IMO covered travel and accommodation expenses for attendees of the SAR Management course, a WAMSARR Regional meeting and a combined practical training exercise.
Captain Udo Fox, of IMRF Members, the German Maritime SAR Service, with the assistance of Mohammed Drissi, successfully delivered the course on Maritime SAR Management.
The SAR Management course was for those the IMO call 'SAR Coordinators', the officials responsible for establishing, organising, staffing, equipping and controlling their country's SAR system, provided knowledge about these managers' functions and duties, and an understanding of the SAR system concept and its legal basis.
Guidance was given on how to establish or develop SAR systems in a methodical and well-planned manner; on essential first steps; and on a suggested work plan for the early years.
The training program was very successful and provides a base for continuing development of Maritime SAR in this region.
The collaboration to deliver this type of training is further demonstration of the commitment within the region, and internationally, to improve maritime SAR and help reduce maritime fatalities.
This aligns with the humanitarian goal of the IMRF and its member organisations - reducing loss of life in the world's waters, which is also the stated intent of the Secretary-General of the IMO.
Photo at the top-right: on the left is the IMO Regional Coordinator for West/Central Africa (Anglophone) - Captain Dallas Laryea presenting certificate to Mr Ronald Moore from Sierra Leone on the right.