The IMRF is set to launch a global panel that will focus on the maritime aviation search and rescue (SAR) sector as the organisation looks to expand its involvement in new and developing areas of the SAR industry.

In its 100 years as a non-governmental organisation, the IMRF has focused almost exclusively on the use of boats and vessels in maritime SAR operations. However, with the extensive use of aviation in modern SAR operations globally, the IMRF believes now is the time for it to expand its knowledge and expertise into this increasingly important sector.

“The IMRF has played a significant role in the development of key maritime SAR technologies, procedures, and best practices for more than a century. Crucially, the IMRF has helped to guide the agenda for maritime SAR. It is vital that the IMRF continues to play a key role in all aspects of maritime SAR and this includes the evolving and expanding use of aviation systems in maritime SAR operations,” said Caroline Jupe, CEO of the IMRF.

To kick start its focus on aviation, the IMRF is inviting aviation organisations, experts and companies from around the world to join its new online maritime SAR Aviation Panel. This panel is only open to active members of the IMRF so if you are interested in joining and providing a unique perspective on the SAR aviation sector, and help represent maritime SAR aviation to international bodies, please contact Roly McKie at [email protected] . If your organisation is not yet an IMRF member, click here to learn more and join us: 

The IMRF will then launch its first official members-only SAR Aviation panel on 28 May. For further details on the Panel and how to join go to Maritime SAR Aviation Panel | International Maritime Rescue Federation (

The SAR Aviation panel will become a regular event to enable participants to present on and discuss aviation SAR subjects and topics, share ideas, showcase technologies, and develop international best practices that the IMRF then present to the global SAR community. It is also hoped the meetings will influence, guide, and inform international discussion through the IMRF’s engagement at the International Maritime Organization (IMO), and the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), on technical and procedural matters, and requirements for maritime aviation SAR.

“These panels and the information provided by members of the international SAR community will be highly beneficial to advancing maritime and aviation SAR practices globally. I wish to extend the invitation to join the IMRF at its SAR Aviation panel as far and wide as possible in order for us to be able to present the very best of our industry,” said Roly McKie, the IMRF’s IMO Representative and SAR Advisor.