Ocean Viking informs MTRCC via email of her altering course towards the reported distress position.
July 4, 2021
Ocean Viking sends an email to LYJRCC (with MTRCC, ITMRCC and Pilotes Volontaires in copy) informing that she has target on radar with speed and course corresponding to the distress case and will launch her Rhibs for further investigation.
Ocean Viking sends an email to LYJRCC, ITMRCC and MTRCC informing that MTRCC confirmed by phone that the Inmarsat distress case is the same as the Alarm Phone one. Ocean Viking informs that has visual on the overcrowded wooden boat and is going to launch her Rhibs.
Ocean Viking receives an email from Alarm Phone informing that the people on board are now without battery on their Thuraya phone (Case AP 182). The last call was too short to ask for a new position.
As Ocean Viking has not succeeded in finding the first distress case (AP 181), she is now proceeding towards distress case AP 182 and informs relevant authorities. The last known position of AP 182 is 121 NM away from the Ocean Viking’s position.
Ocean Viking receives an updated position of a boat in distress (case AP 182) from Alarm Phone.
Ocean Viking receives from an updated position of a boat in distress (case AP 182) from Alarm Phone.
Ocean Viking alters course going back to the latest known position of case AP 181 to start a new search pattern.
Ocean Viking receives an email from Colibri 2 (Pilotes Volontaires) confirming that the first distress case has been intercepted by the LCG patrol vessel and that the second distress case still requires assistance.
Colibri2 informs Ocean Viking of her intention to continue flying over the distress boat to witness the situation.
Ocean Viking sends an email to LYJRCC and MTRCC (with ITMRCC in copy) informing of the latest updated position of the first distress case. Ocean Viking is still heading towards the second distress case.
Ocean Viking receives an email sent by Colibri aircraft, addressed to LYJRCC, ITMRCC and MTJRCC, with Alarm Phone, Sea-Watch airborne operations and Ocean VIking in copy, informing of visual contact made with a blue wooden boat with about 50 (visible) people onboard.
Reported position: 33N 19 / 12E 36
Ocean Viking establishes visual contact with the second boat reported in distress.
At 10:04, the Ocean Viking sends an email to LYJRCC, with ITMRCC, MTRCC, Alarm Phone, Sea-Watch 3 and Airborne in copy, to inform that she has passed the last reported position of the wooden boat and that search efforts are being pursued to the North.
At 09:45, the Ocean Viking reaches by VHF a ship closer to the estimated target position to ask if she has a visual contact with a wooden boat. The ship replies negatively, saying that she is close to Sabratha Platform and that no wooden boats are in sight.
The Ocean Viking informs authorities that she is responding and informs of multiple attempts to contact Libyan JRCC
ITMRCC answers a phone call from the Ocean Viking during which it is informed that Sea-Watch 3 is responding to the rubber boat distress call (Alarm Phone Case 1 AP 19.02) whereas the Ocean Viking responds to the second distress call from a wooden boat (Alarm Phone Case 2 AP 19.02).
ITMRCC is also made aware of the multiple attempts to contact LYJRCC, which fails at responding or speaking any other language than Arabic. The Ocean Viking informs that there are no instructions or coordination from authorities regarding SAR efforts in the area.
The Ocean Viking is informed of additional rescue efforts
At 08:08, the Ocean Viking receives an email that was addressed to JRCC Tripoli, with Alarm Phone and Airborne in copy. In this communication, Sea Watch 3 informs that they will respond to the rubber boat distress call.
Alarm Phone sends an email addressed to LYJRCC, MTJRCC and ITMRCC with the Ocean Viking, Sea-Watch 3 and Airborne in copy, informing that they received a distress call from a wooden boat that departed from Zawiya around 23:00 on February 18th.
At 07:19 on February 19th, Alarm Phone sends an email addressed to LYJRCC, MTJRCC and ITMRCC with the Ocean Viking, Sea-Watch 3 and Airborne in copy, informing that they received a distress call from a rubber boat that departed from Zawiya around 23:00 on February 18th.
At 15:56, the Ocean Viking sends an email to JRCC-Tripoli with Alarm Phone, and Sea-Watch 3 in copy, to inform that visual contact has been established with an overcrowded rubber boat. Because of worsening weather conditions, RHIBs are being prepared.
Ocean Viking position: 33°33.6’N 012°21.2’E
The Ocean Viking establishes visual contact with target
The Ocean Viking sends an email to LYJRCC with Sea-Watch 3 and Alarm Phone in copy, to inform that her course and speed have been altered to investigate and assist if need be and that the Ocean Viking position is situated 1 hour away from the reported position.
The Ocean Viking sends an email to LYJRCC and Alarm Phone, with MTJRCC and ITMRCC in copy, to inform that visual contact has been established with an overcrowded wooden boat near position 34°17.2’N 012°24.5’E. It also informs that it will evaluate the situation.
The Ocean Viking establishes visual contact with boat in distress through EUNAVFOR MED aircraft
“Dears Sirs, MV Ocean Viking received Navtext message OA27 regarding a dark green dinghy in distress. MV Ocean Viking in current MV Position 35-17.5N / 013-04.3E at 1320Z COG 155 SOG 6.5 is heading towards a potential interception course according to the last position given and speed for render assistance.” The previous NAVTEXT OA26 was referring to a white rubber boat in the vicinity of the green one.”
Ocean Viking receives a NAVTEX to all ships from MTMRCC on behalf Libyan Coast Guard about a boat in distress.
“ We received a new position from the people on the boat that left from Zawiyya around 10pm yesterday evening local time (24. January 2020). They say they are around 80 people (including 10 children and 20 women). The latest known position is (from 16.38 CET): 16:38 CET, N 34°41’93”, E 012°48’772″ (in the Malta SAR-Zone) They informed us that their gasoline is finished, and that the wind is increasing. They say the situation is very tense and are afraid of drowning. […]”
Ocean Viking calls to MTMRCC asking for update positions
Alan Kurdi is closer to the Alarm phone reported boat in distress in position 33° 25,229 N 012° 30.226′ E. Alan Kurdi is 6,7 NM, Ocean Viking is 9,7 NM. Ocean Viking is ready to render assistance in case of need.
Ocean Viking is copied in an email from Alarm Phone informing about a potential boat in distress
“We received a distress call from a boat with 60 people, which we are told includes many women, some of them pregnant, as well as many children. The boat started from Sabratha. The Thuraya phone number on the boat is +88 216 2120 2153 Position N33 25 229 E012 30 226 (time 07:00 CET)
They are urgently asking for help.”
Ocean Viking informs by email LYJRCC (copying ITMRCC, RCCMALTA, EUNAVFOR MED and AlarmPhone) that has visual contact with the reported boat in distress
Alarm Phone informs by email: “ Dear Sirs,We received a distress call from a boat with 50 people (8 women, some children) started from Sabratha around 10.50 pm local time. The boat is a blue wooden boat. The Thuraya phone number on the boat is +88 216 5554 2875 Position N 33 10 907 E 012 31 072 (time 2:52 CET) They are urgently asking for help. There is water entering the boat. Only a few of them have life vests.” Ocean Viking Position: 33° 15.1′ N 012° 29.1’E
Ocean Viking is copied in an email from Alarm Phone to LYJRCC informing about a boat in distress. “Dear sirs, We received a distress call of a boat with 95 people (15 women, 4 children) started from Zawiya around 10 pm local time. Position N 33 11 4580 E 012 54 4870 (time 1:54 German time) They are urgently asking for help.”
Ocean Viking Position: 33° 21.7′ N 012° 42.5′ E
Ocean Viking is patrolling, 31 nautical miles from the Libyan coast
Ocean Viking email to the Libyan Join Rescue Coordination Center copy to Italian and Maltese Coordination Centers also, as well to EUNAVFORMED, informing that Ocean Viking had spotted a blue wooden boat and about the intention to launch the RHIBs and investigate.
Alert phase: apprehension exists as to the safety of the boat and its occupants.
Ocean Viking email to the Libyan Join Rescue Coordination Center copy to Italian and Maltese Coordination Centers also, as well to EUNAVFORMED and Alarm Phone, reporting the email from Alarm Phone about the boat in distress
Ocean Viking receives an email from the Alert Phone informing about a boat in distress
Alarm Phone informs by email: “Dear Sirs and Madams,At 02:05 AM CET on January 17th, we had contact with a boat in distress.Number on board: +8821655544383Their last-known position was 33° 23′ 562” N, 12° 42′ 1416” E (02:06 AM CET).The boat was blue wooden with approximately 35 people on board. 10 women, 5 children.They told us that water was coming in and they couldn’t move anymore.The engine is broken, they cannot move.” Ocean Viking Position: 33° 27.2′ N 012° 32.1′ E
All the information gathered by reaching out to Libyan JRCC, Rome MRCC, Alarm Phone and Sea-Watch 3, leads the Ocean Viking to conclude that there are no possibilities of finding the reported boat in distress.
Since the moment the boat was reportedly seen (Sunday 29th around noon), considering the weather conditions north of Al Khums (strong northerly winds), a rubber boat with no working engine (as reported to the Ocean Viking) would have drifted onto the Libyan shore after 9 to 12 hours.
While in position 33° 31.2′N 013° 17.4′E, Ocean Viking informs maritime authorities of her conclusions and that she resumes patrolling, heading West, while remaining available for any assistance that may be required.
Ocean Viking receives an alert email informing about a boat in distress spotted 50 hours ago
While patrolling in the Libyan SRR in position 33-27.2N 012-04.3E, Ocean Viking receives two emails from SeaWatch Airborne Operations (sent at 12h54 and 13h43, addressed to Maltese and Italian RCCs as well, but only received at 14h25) reporting a wooden boat spotted by Moonbird patrol airplane. The wooden boat is reported to be in distress. Last reported position 34-09’N 012-26’E, course 020, speed 8 knots. Ocean Viking alters course towards the target.
On request, MTJRCC informs Ocean Viking that black rubber boat has been rescued and asks for an update on survivors on board offshore supply ship
Ocean Viking calls MTJRRC on phone for an update on black rubber boat. MTJRCC informs Ocean Viking that rescue of black rubber boat is completed. MTJRCC asks Ocean Viking about situation on board offshore supply ship
Ocean Viking is copied in an email from Alarm Phone to MTJRCC informing about a boat in distress. The reported position of the boat is approximately 90 nm away. Ocean Viking alters course and proceeds towards the target
Ocean Viking spots several lifejackets on the water and stops in position 33°31.3’N 012°17.0’E for further investigation. Easy 1 is launched, carries out a search pattern and finds debris of a black rubber boat.
Ocean Viking calls LYJRCC on phone and provides her updated position. LYJRCC informs Ocean Viking that LNCG patrol boat Fezzan is underway to intercept rubber boat in distress. Ocean Viking offers assistance and receives order to remain on stand by.
Ocean Viking informs LYJRCC that she will proceed towards reported boat in distress
Ocean Viking sends email to LYJRCC and informs that she will proceed towards reported boat in distress:
” … Please be advised that Ocean Viking is proceeding to this location, N 33-0141 E 13-49 21. We are currently about 5hrs away. Ocean Viking has been patrolling to the west of Tripoli and to the south of the oil fields. Due to the presence of other vessels in this area that would be able to assist with rescues if needed Ocean Viking is proceeding east. Ocean Viking will remain outside of Libyan territorial waters at all times.
Any assistance in coordinating this SAR event is much appreciated. Ocean Viking will continue to update this RCC and we are standing by for any further information. “
“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, if possible informing them or the search and rescue service that the ship is doing so. This obligation to provide assistance applies regardless of the nationality or status of such persons or the circumstances in which they are found …” (Source: SOLAS Ch V Reg 33.1)
Ocean Viking is copied in an email from Alarm Phone to LYJRCC informing about a boat in distress. The reported position of the boat is approximately 60 nm away. Ocean Viking alters course and proceeds towards the target
Ocean Viking informs on readiness for SAR operations
Upon entering the Libyan Search and Rescue Region, Ocean Viking sends a notice to the LYJRCC, informing of the vessel’s readiness to conduct SAR operations. ITMRCC and MTJRCC are also informed. Ocean Viking additionally provides the vessel’s technical specifications.
Ocean Viking receives an email from Alarm Phone regarding a boat in distress with about 100 people, 25 NM away
Ocean Viking informs by email LYJRCC (copying ITMRCC, RCCMALTA and EUNAVFOR MED) about the email received from Alarm Phone. Ocean Viking reports update on the search. No boat was found. Ocean Viking requests update and gives availability in case of further information. Ocean Viking proceeds towards the target position given by Alarm Phone
Ocean Viking exchanges information with EUNAVFOR MED plane
Upon entering the Libyan Search and Rescue Region, Ocean Viking sends a notice to the Libyan JRCC, informing of the vessel’s readiness to conduct SAR operations. Italian MRCC, Maltese MRCC and EUNAVFOR Med are also informed. Ocean Viking additionally provides the vessel’s technical specification.
MV Ocean Viking declares readiness for SAR operations in the Central Mediterranean Sea, South of Lampedusa and Malta, outside of Libyan Territorial Waters.
Actual position: 34°18.6’N – 012°11.7’E Proceeding with COG 133° SOG 6.5 kts, remaining in international water at all times.
MV Ocean Viking
Ocean Viking is heading south due to weather conditions
EUNAVFOR Med informs Ocean Viking about today LCG interceptions in the area of interest. EUNAVFOR Med also informs Ocean Viking that EU patrol aircrafts did not spot any rubber boat in this area after the interceptions operated by LCG during the day
Ocean Viking is patrolling in the Libyan search and rescue region at a speed of 5 knots
Ocean Viking receives information from survivors onboard the vessel, rescued today, about another possible rubber boat that might have left Libya shore on Sunday night. Ocean Viking is heading towards the area to investigate
Ocean Viking informs the Libyan JRCC by email about the completion of the rescue operation and the change of course towards a potential boat in distress in the Maltese SRR
From: Ocean Viking To: LYJRCC Cc: ITMRCC, MTJRCC, EUNAVFORmed “Dear sirs, For your information, following the completion of the rescue earlier today on Ocean Viking, we have understood from our survivors that it is likely there was another departure from the same location in Libya 1 hour earlier, possible rubber boat with 150 pax. The exact departure point in Libya is still not clear. We are continuing to keep a sharp lookout for this second boat and will inform the authorities of any sightings. We are patrolling and can be contacted via VHF, sat phone, or e-mail.”
Ocean Viking calls ITMRCC informing about our search operation ongoing
Ocean Viking receives a second email from the NGO Alarm Phone, informing ITMRCC and MTJRCC of a possible alternative position of the boat in distress mentioned in the previous communication. Ocean Viking is in copy again.
Aquarius starts search pattern at position 33°14’ N, 014°07’1 E
Call on VHF to Patrol boat Al Khifa. Patrol boat al Khifa responds. Aquarius informs that it is altering to the south to conduct a search pattern. Patrol boat Al Khifa gives green light to conduct search pattern. Patrol boat Al Khifa is 3 NM from Aquarius’ stern.
Libyan JRCC acknowledges receipt of emails, orders to keep searching towards the North and to keep them informed
Email from Aquarius to Libyan JRCC, with MTJRCC, ITMRCC and EUNAVFOR MED in copy:
“Dear Sir, Good copy sir. Aquarius will continue to search. Our current pos. is 34-06.3N 012-04.2E searching to the north for the time being. If no joy we will start another search pattern. One of my RHIBs has investigated several fishing vessels in the area. On two occasions the fishermen said that they had seen the boat heading North.”
The LNCG informs Aquarius that “at the moment We don’t have any more information about SAR case 661. Continue the search, We are looking for White small fiber boat with 10 people on board. Last known position was near White and blue fishing vessel.”
Aquarius completed search pattern and returns to patrolling area at 24 nm from the Libyan coast
“Any search and rescue unit receiving information of a distress incident shall initially take immediate action if in the position to assist and shall, in any case without delay, notify the rescue co-ordination centre or rescue subcentre in whose area the incident has occurred.” [Click for legal reference]