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The IMRF brings the world's maritime search and rescue organisations together in one global - and growing – family.  Our members share their lifesaving ideas, technologies and experiences and freely cooperate with one another all with the aim of improving maritime SAR capability worldwide.

The IMRF ‘Members Assisting Members’ scheme allows any member to post any resources or skills that they can offer to another organisation, so that other IMRF members can consider the offer, and reply accordingly.

Earlier this year, German SAR organization, Deutsche Gesellschaft zur Rettung Schiffbrüchiger (DGzRS) donated a SAR boat to the Maritime Transport Agency (MTA) of Georgia. 

The boat was no longer needed as DGzRS was in the process of upgrading its fleet of SAR vessels to a new class of rescue boat, while the Georgian MTA did not have its own boat and was using other organizations’ boats during rescue operations.

The donation will significantly increase the Georgian’s SAR capability, helping the development of SAR operations in the region.  The SAR boat Hermann Onken will be deployed across the operational SAR area covered by the MRCC Georgia and will be based in Batumi. 

Batumi is one of the main oil sea ports in Georgia and the number of ships using the port is increasing every year.  As a result Hermann Onken will be used by the MRCC Georgia to help manage navigation services and to act as surveillance in the SRR (search and rescue region) of Georgia. 

The new rescue boat will provide emergency SAR response in the case of any accidents or oil spill incidents and will lead any local and international SAR operations and emergency oil spill elimination exercises. 

The new vessel is particularly sturdy and designed to be self-righting should it capsize.

In September 2020, Carl Johannes Göner, Technical Superintendent with DGzRS - following all the local COVID-19 regulations regarding travel and social distancing - visited Batumi to provide the necessary technical training and to recommission the SAR boat for the Georgian MTA.

The training was attended by both technical personnel and future rescuers, who will work on the boat moving forward. 

Special rescue equipment has now been purchased for the boat and rescuers and the transfer of the Hermann Onken has been completed in accordance with the laws of Georgia.

Professor Gegenava, Head of Search & Rescue and Vessel Traffic Monitoring Department, Maritime Transport Agency of Georgia said: "We are very pleased to receive this SAR boat, it will help us to save human lives at sea and will allow us to maintain a high level of training amongst our rescuers."

About the Hermann Onken

  • Dimensions: length is 8, 52 m; breadth 3, 12 m; draft - 0, 75 m; max. draft - 0, 93 m; displacement - 5, 5 mt; fuel oil tank capacities - 618 m3.
  • Equipment: Radar X-band; chart plotter; echo sounder; electric compass; magnetic compass; clear-view window; radar reflector.
  • Radio - VHF SAILOR; VHF handheld; AIS SAAB R4. 
  • Safety Equipment -fire extinguisher CO2; life jackets; submersible pump Jung.
  • Engine - Perkins Sabre MC  215C 155 kW at 2.600 rpm