COVID-19 & Pandemic Response

At a webinar held on the 24 February 2021, the IMRF launched its Pandemic Response Guidance Manual. The manual has been produced with support from Lloyd’s Register Foundation. 

Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, the need for effective SAR services around the globe has continued, despite the risks posed by the virus to both SAR crews themselves and to those they rescue.

The COVID-19 specific operational guidance that IMRF published last year, was a response to the lack of any guidance for SAR organisations, planning to deliver SAR services in the face of COVID-19 challenges. 

The primary aim of this new Pandemic Response Guidance for Maritime Search and Rescue Organisations is to help save lives by providing a resource containing essential skills, knowledge and guidance for those operating in a maritime search and rescue environment during a pandemic or major health emergency.  

This guidance is not exhaustive, but it aims to suggest changes to policies and procedures that organisations may wish to introduce to ensure that the risk to their own personnel and others is minimised, whilst also maintaining the integrity of the service that they provide.   

During the webinar, Dave Whiddon, the IMRF Project Manager for the production of this guidance, provided some background to this project and gave an overview of the manual.

Other speakers included Bruce Sandmann, Operations Manager, National Sea Rescue Institute (NSRI) in South Africa and Stephan King, Manager, Capacity Building at the Canadian Coast Guard, who shared their experience of adapting SAR operations in the face of the challenges posed by COVID-19.

Jan Przydatek, Director of Technologies at Lloyd’s Register Foundation, also joined the webinar to give an overview of the Foundation’s commitment to maritime safety and why they had decided to support this project.

The Webinar concluded with a Panel discussion.

You can watch a recording of the webinar, download the chat log and view the webinar pulse poll below.

To view and download the Pandemic Response Guidance for Maritime Search and Rescue Organisations, as well a one-page introductory leaflet, please click here.

Webinar Recording

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Chat Log

- Pandemic Response Guidance for Maritime SAR Organisations - Webinar Recording - Chat Log