11/10: Travellers in distress in the Central Mediterranean rescued

12.10.2016 / 21:53 / Central Mediterranean Sea

Watch The Med Alarm Phone Investigations – 11th of October 2016

Case name: 2016_10_11-CM86
Situation: 312 travellers in distress between Libya and Italy, rescued by Safe the Children
Status of WTM Investigation: Concluded
Place of Incident: Central Mediterranean Sea

Summary of the Cases: On Tuesday, the 11th of October 2016 at 11.17am, Father Mussie Zerai alerted the Alarm Phone to a boat in distress in the Central Med, forwarding us their satellite phone number. The vessel was a wooden fishing boat carrying 312 travellers. We passed on the information to the Italian coast guard, who informed us that they were already working on the case. It was not possible for our shift team to establish direct contact to the boat, but by monitoring the balance of the Thuraya phone, we could see that the boat was in contact with others from time to time, as their credit decreased. At 6.05pm a contact person informed us that Sea Watch and Save the Children, who were searching for the boat together with an army helicopter, just spotted the boat. When we spoke to the Italian coast guard again at 8.27pm, they confirmed that the rescue operation was ongoing. Later our contact person informed us that the rescue operation had been completed shortly after 10pm by the vessel of Safe the Children, Vos Hestia, with the support of Sea Eye.
Last update: 21:58 Nov 10, 2016
Credibility: UP DOWN 0
Layers »
  • Border police patrols
    While the exact location of patrols is of course constantly changing, this line indicates the approximate boundary routinely patrolled by border guards’ naval assets. In the open sea, it usually correspond to the outer extent of the contiguous zone, the area in which “State may exercise the control necessary to prevent infringement of its customs, fiscal, immigration or sanitary laws” (UNCLOS, art. 33). Data source: interviews with border police officials.
  • Coastal radars
    Approximate radar beam range covered by coastal radars operating in the frame of national marine traffic monitoring systems. The actual beam depends from several different parameters (including the type of object to be detected). Data source: Finmeccanica.
  • Exclusive Economic Zone
    Maritime area beyond and adjacent to the territorial sea in which the coastal state exercises sovereign rights for the purposes of exploring and exploiting, conserving and managing the natural resources, whether living or non-living, the seabed and its subsoil and the superjacent waters. Its breadth is 200 nautical miles from the straight baselines from which the territorial sea is measured (UNCLOS, Arts. 55, 56 and 57). Data source: Juan Luis Suárez de Vivero, Atlas of the European Seas and Oceans
  • Frontex operations
    Frontex has, in the past few years, carried out several sea operations at the maritime borders of the EU. The blue shapes indicate the approximate extend of these operations. Data source: Migreurop Altas.
  • Mobile phone coverage
    Global System for Mobile Communications (GSM) network coverage. Data source: Collins Mobile Coverage.
  • Oil and gas platforms
    Oil and gas platforms in the Mediterranean. Data source:
  • Search and Rescue Zone
    An area of defined dimensions within which a given state is has the responsibility to co-ordinate Search and Rescue operations, i.e. the search for, and provision of aid to, persons, ships or other craft which are, or are feared to be, in distress or imminent danger. Data source: IMO availability of search and rescue (SAR) services - SAR.8/Circ.3, 17 June 2011.
  • Territorial Waters
    A belt of sea (usually extending up to 12 nautical miles) upon which the sovereignty of a coastal State extends (UNCLOS, Art. 2). Data source: Juan Luis Suárez de Vivero, Atlas of the European Seas and Oceans

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