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News & Media

  • Victims found in successful search and rescue exercise
  • October 13, 2014

All four “victims” were successfully rescued from the ocean in the weekend’s major coordinated Search and Rescue Exercise (SAREX) off the coast of Batemans Bay.

More than 50 rescue specialists from the State’s south took part in the exercise to test agencies’ marine search and rescue practices and coordination.

Members of Marine Rescue Batemans Bay, Tuross, Narooma, Merimbula and Ulladulla attended, along with members of the NSW Police Force Marine Area Command, NSW Roads and Maritime Services, the Royal Australian Navy, Westpac Rescue Helicopter and Surf Life Saving NSW.

The weekend began with a series of presentations and theoretical table top exercises focused on rescue coordination and resourcing and search patterns and operations from the Australian Maritime Safety Authority, Marine Area Command, MRNSW and Westpac Rescue Helicopter personnel.

This was followed by a demonstration of the Westpac helicopter’s equipment and capability.

Following an early morning briefing on Sunday, a fleet of seven vessels, three jet skis and three inflatable boats took to the ocean in good conditions with excellent visibility and moderate winds from the north-east for the search and rescue exercise.

Three rescue mannikins and an esky were dropped in ocean and island locations.

The vessels travelled out of Batemans Bay, with MRNSW vessel Narooma 30, Tuross 20 and a Surf Life Saving inflatable rubber boat the control vessels for three designated search areas.

All targets were successfully located and retrieved by 11.30am before the fleet returned to shore for a debrief and the exercise conclusion.

MRNSW Deputy Commissioner Dean Storey congratulated all participants on a successful exercise.

“These joint-agency exercises not only build and reinforce marine rescue search and rescue skills but also build particularly valuable collaborative relationships between agencies and rescue personnel,” Deputy Commissioner Storey said.

“If we’re to have the best possible chance of finding and rescuing someone in the water as soon as possible in an emergency, when time is always of the essence, we rely on everyone working seamlessly together in a well-coordinated operation.

“This weekend’s SAREX again demonstrated the great value of these exercises to our rescue personnel along the coastline.”

Click here and here to download photos 


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