SafeTrx Raises Distress Alarm on Capsized RIB in South Africa

Posted in LIFELINE May 2017 - English

Designed in close co-operation with Coast Guard and Sea Rescue organisations, SafeTrx is a proven maritime safety platform that helps reduce the risk of maritime accidents and the loss of human lives at sea. It is the world’s leading maritime search and rescue application with over 750,000 recorded hours of use around the world. SafeTrx is the standard marine mobile safety platform in nine countries:Ireland, UK, The Netherlands, Finland, Norway, Australia, Germany, Spain and South Africa.

When an Emergency or Assistance Call is made through the SafeTrx app, it sends the end users position, speed and heading information obtained from the Smartphone’s GPS to the SafeTrx server. The MRCC can access this critical information through the SafeTrx Monitoring Console. Likewise, when a trip exceeds its estimated time of arrival, a series of SMS messages is sent the end users emergency contacts. With access to location data, vessel and emergency contact information, SafeTrx shortens the uncertainty phase in an overdue case and reduces SAR response times as a result.

In a statement, the National Sea Rescue Institute (NSRI) said on Monday 17th April, NSRI Mykonos station commander Casper Frylink reported the Mykonos lifeboat station was activated by the Transnet National Ports Authority (TNPA) following a SafeTrx distress call received from 2 persons on a capsized RHIB off-shore of Gonnemanskraal, Jacobsbaai. Reporting a third person was still under water scuba diving from their boat at the capsized position, they made an emergency call using the SafeTrx app to the MRCC (Maritime Rescue Coordination Centre) to raise the alarm.The MRCC used the information sent from the SafeTrx app to locate and assist the callers. In addition, family in Cape Town who had also received the SafeTrx overdue SMS message, contacted friends in Jacobsbaai who launched their private boat to go to assist.

Persons on board were off-duty NSRI coxswains on a recreational day diving and were commended for having all safety measures and equipment at hand to initiate an immediate rescue response.In addition to raising the alarm via SafeTrx, they set off red distress flares at delayed intervals and deployed the anchor to prevent the upturned boat from drifting onto rocks. The red distress flares were noticed by campers at Trekoskraal who launched their recreational craft and came to assist. After surfacing, the scuba diver made a call for assistance and to confirm their position using a handheld Marine VHF radio that he recovered from their upturned craft. On arrival to the scene, NSRI assisted to right the capsize RIB and was towed to shore.

SafeTrx assisted the incident response Operators in directing SAR resources and communicating critical information to the relevant responders.

Full incident report can be found at:

Contact Info

International Maritime Rescue Federation
50 Allardice Street
AB39 2RA
United Kingdom

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