492 - 10/06 - The Rescue of Persons in Distress at Sea - Worldwide

Earlier this year the IMO Maritime Safety Committee approved the Guide on recovery techniques, which provides specific guidance to seafarers on techniques for the recovery of persons in distress at sea.

The Guide recognises that the rescue of persons from the water or other craft is not straight forward and often a unique solution will have to be found in order to solve a unique lifesaving problem. The guide supports the recovery guidance in Volume III of the International Aeronautical and Maritime Search and Rescue (IAMSAR) Manual, and its principal aims are to help masters and crew assess an incident, prepare for it, and also to train for emergency situations.

Intended for use as a reference document, it is recommended that the Guide be read by ship's crew now, and also read when proceeding to the scene of an emergency. The full Guide is attached with this bulletin and can also be downloaded from the International Maritime Organization website using the link below:


For the interest of Members, the Club rule on diversion expenses is quoted below:

Rule 2 Section 7

Expenses of diversion of an entered ship where and to the extent that those expenses (i) represent the net loss to the Owner (over and above such expenses as would have been incurred but for the diversion) in respect of the cost of fuel, insurance, wages, stores, provisions and port charges and (ii) are incurred solely for the purpose of securing treatment for an injured or sick person or while awaiting a substitute for such person or for the purpose of landing stowaways or refugees, or for the purpose of saving life at sea.

Source of information:

International Maritime Organization



Staff Author