The International Maritime Rescue Federation (IMRF) has announced the finalists for the 2017 H.E.R.O. Awards, recognising some of the exceptional individuals and organisations around the world who go above and beyond in maritime search and rescue (SAR).
IMRF Chairman and Trustee, Udo Fox said: "We have received nominations from around the world and we would like to thank all those who entered an individual or organisation for an award. There were many, many extremely worthy candidates and organisations doing inspiring work. We would also like to thank the judges for their deliberations and for deciding on the list of finalists, which we are proud to announce today."
Pole Star, which has proudly served the maritime sector by increasing safety and security at sea for 20 years, is sponsoring the International Maritime Rescue Federation’s H.E.R.O. award for Innovation and Technology in Maritime Search and Rescue.
The H.E.R.O. (Honouring Excellence in Rescue Operations) Awards, launched last year, have been developed to draw attention to the extraordinary work done to save lives in maritime Search and Rescue (SAR) across the world.
8 West Consulting, the company that developed SafeTrx, the vessel tracking smartphone application, has been announced as the sponsor of the International Maritime Rescue Federation’s H.E.R.O. award for Outstanding Individual Contribution to a Maritime SAR Operation.
The deadline for nominations for the IMRF H.E.R.O Awards, 2017, closed at the end of July and judging is currently underway. This year there were more than 40 entries from around the world, nominating individuals and organisations involved in maritime search and rescue, who deserve recognition for their exceptional service.
For the sixth year running, search and rescue (SAR) crew from across Europe will be swapping places with their counterparts to take part in a week-long Lifeboat Crew Exchange organised by the International Maritime Rescue Federation (IMRF).
Representatives from 13 different countries – Germany, Iceland, Norway, Finland, Sweden, Denmark, England, France, Portugal, Estonia, the Netherlands, Ireland and Greece – will be taking part, with 11 countries hosting their international colleagues for the specialist seven day programme which will run from 23-30 September 2017.
"The master of a ship at sea which is in a position to be able to provide assistance, on receiving information from any source that persons are in distress at sea, is bound to proceed with all speed to their assistance…."
So begins Chapter V Regulation 33 of the Safety of Life at Sea (SOLAS) Convention: international law, ratified by very nearly all maritime States. SOLAS Chapter V applies “unless expressly provided otherwise […] to all ships on all voyages”. The exceptions are few: Government vessels such as warships – which are nevertheless “encouraged” to comply – and (perhaps rather oddly) “ships solely navigating the Great Lakes of North America […]”
To be clear, then, all vessels at sea, with some clear exceptions, are obliged under international law to assist “persons in distress at sea”. Indeed, this was been seafaring tradition for centuries. So what is there to discuss?
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