In Maritime Search and Rescue there are no 'lone rangers', there is always a team behind that reaching hand.
You can see them if you look closely enough. They are the trainers who taught a rescuer how to handle the situation they are the teams in the rescue coordination centre that control the mission. They are the rescue teams who head into rough seas to find missing sailors. They are the Masters and crew of vessels who navigate for days to reach a vessel in distress. They are the fundraisers who work tirelessly to ensure that there is money for equipment. They are the young inventors who have a great idea and turn it into something that is saving lives right now!
Take a look, they are all right there, and they are all worthy of a H.E.R.O. Award.
Friday 28 July 2017 was the last day to nominate these unsung maritime heroes in the International Maritime Rescue Federation H.E.R.O. (Honouring Excellence in Rescue Operations) Awards. First launched last year, we have received nominations from around the world, from friends, family and work colleagues wanting to recognise people close to them who have done something exceptional in the field of search and rescue (SAR).
This year’s nominations are as international as last year's and include nominations for teams, individuals and technological innovations that have all saved lives over the last year. From dredging equipment and specialist expertise provided free of charge to any water related search and rescue team by Dregteam SOAD; to SafeTrx 2017, which links the technology behind SAR drones, satellite terminals, wearables, MOB devices and smartphones, allowing them all to interconnect and providing the most comprehensive SAR information possible.
Nominations also included National Sea Rescue WaterWise Academy in South Africa which has been teaching disadvantaged children about water safety. Another nomination was for Mr Joel Morgado from the U.S. Coast Guard Sector San Juan, who has been nominated for his role in saving 511 lives when the cruise ship the Caribbean Fantasy caught fire. HM Coastguard Belfast have also been applauded for their professionalism, expertise, determination and refusal to give up when they instigated and conducted a seven hour search for a missing surfer who had been in the water for at least 32 hours.
Bruce Reid, IMRF CEO, says; “We have received nominations showcasing incredible examples of bravery and determination in the face of significant maritime dangers, alongside details of truly exciting and innovative new technologies which are being used to support and enhance SAR operations around the world. It is humbling to read the nominations, but we all feel incredibly glad that through the H.E.R.O. Awards these people and organisations will get just some of the recognition and thanks for their amazing actions, which they so richly deserve.
People, organisations, innovations and technologies like these need to be recognised, to highlight to the world the team effort that goes into SAR at sea.
The H.E.R.O. Awards 2017 are supported by IMRF lead sponsor Orolia/McMurdo – global leader in emergency response and readiness – and sponsor Inmarsat – global satellite owner and operator which provides mobile and fixed communications services to the maritime industry.
All of the submissions will now be assessed by the judges and the winners announced at an awards dinner held at the RNLI, Poole in the UK and online, 2 November, 2017.