Watch The Med Alarm Phone Investigations – 3rd of January 2017Case name
: 33 travellers in distress on their way to Motril intercepted by the Moroccan Marine RoyalStatus of WTM Investigation
: ConcludedPlace of Incident
: Western Mediterranean SeaSummary of the Cases:
On Tuesday, the 3rd of January 2017 at 12.05am, the Alarm Phone was alerted by a contact person to a group of 33 travellers, amongst them four women, on their way to Spain. They had left Morocco at 4am from a beach close to Nador. Communication with the boat was very difficult due to problems with the connection. At 2.45pm we passed on the information about the vessel to the Spanish search and rescue organisation, Salvamento Maritimo (SM), in Almeria. They informed us that they were already searching for the boat, using their search and rescue aircraft, and that they already had rescue vessels in the area, carrying out the rescue of another boat. When we later managed to establish contact to the travellers, they informed us that water was leaking into the boat, and that some of the people were sick. At 4.40 we talked to the travellers again, and they told us that an aircraft was circling over them, but that no vessel was coming to rescue them. Right after this call we received an email from SM, explaining that the Moroccan MRCC had requested to carry out the rescue of this boat. As the boat was in international water, we tried to put pressure on SM by stressing the urgency of the situation, but they insisted that they could not carry out the rescue operation, as the boat was in the Moroccan search and rescue zone. At 7.30pm we got a confirmation from the Moroccan Marine Royal and SM that the boat had been rescued and all the travellers were safe. They were all taken back to Nador.
Last update: 16:39 Jan 15, 2017