Wednesday, 28 October 2015 was a day of celebration as the Åland Sea Rescue Society celebrated 50 years’ service to the boating community in the waters around the island.
The celebrations coincided with the IMRF European Meeting with delegates joining lifeboat members and local dignitaries for a dinner at the Hotel Archipelago, kindly provided by Viking Line and Posten Åland.
ÅSRS Chairman, Lennart Joelsson, reflected on the great work done by the 120+ volunteers and staff, who not only save lives at sea, but also contribute to keeping the islands maritime environment safe. The society has 1400 supporter members and undertakes between 100-150 SAR missions every year.
There are 6 lifeboat stations, the largest in Mariehamn, which has 5 permanent staff. These staff are supported by 20 volunteer sea rescuers. All other stations are operated by volunteers with close cooperation with the local volunteer fire brigades.
During the evening the other rescue services present acknowledged the achievements of this small, but effective, rescue service. Captain Udo Fox congratulated ÅSRS on the 50 year milestone on behalf of all our members. Maritime SAR is a close community and it is great to take time to celebrate the achievements of our fellow rescue organisations.
To mark the anniversary a special stamp has been produced by Posten Åland, which depicts a dramatic rescue scene.
To download and view the IMRF European Meeting Summary, presentations, video and photos, please go to the "IMRF European Regional Meeting" page. (new window)