Our ship: the Aquarius

UNTIL 2009 THE AQUARIUS WAS OPERATED AS A FISHERY PROTECTION VESSEL IN THE NORTH ATLANTIC. IT IS A ROBUST AND SEAWORTHY SHIP THAT OFFERS WIDE SPACES BELOW DECK, MAKING IT VERY SUITABLE FOR YEAR-ROUND USE AS A RESCUE SHIP IN THE MEDITERRANEAN.

Size:  Length 77 m/Width 11.8 m/Draught 5.7 m
Crew: Nautical and Technical Crew of 10 + Search and Rescue and Medical Crew
Rescue capacity: 200 – 500 people

Our operation

Our operations take place in coordination with the Italian Maritime Rescue Coordination Center (MRCC) in Rome, which is the first to receive calls from boats in distress. Once calls are received, the Aquarius is given more detailed instructions as well as the coordinates of the SAR-area. Once the crew has located the affected boat, speedboats are dispatched towards the boat in distress. Life jackets are distributed to the passengers and individuals in distress are taken aboard the Aquarius, where they are received by the medical team and provided with first aid. The MRCC also gives instructions on which port to call to disembark the rescued.

SOS MEDITERRANEE is supported by European civil society. The operations are funded through private donations.

The ship

The Team

Preparations

Rescue operations

Arrival on board

Life on board

Arriving in Italy

BBC News – Aquarius, the technical challenge