Sharing is what the IMRF is all about; and it's what our mass rescue operations (MRO) project is all about too. At present there are three main threads to the project.
The Gothenburg Conference Series is the first thread: the third international conference in the series will be held on 1-3 June 2014.
Then there's the IMRF MRO Library. This will be a comprehensive and user-friendly on-line library of maritime mass rescue operations guidance material. Anyone preparing for MROs will be able to study the whole problem or easily find guidance on particular issues. A working group of subject-matter experts drawn from IMRF member and partner organisations is compiling the library. We intend to have it up and running within the next year.
Finally, there are the IMRF MRO Workshops. These are usually one-day events designed to bring all the main responders together, nationally or regionally, to enable them to discuss their roles and capabilities and, using a tabletop exercise suited to their local circumstances, to discuss the many issues arising from MROs.
The overall project aims are to raise awareness, enable discussion and share expertise and experience. The three main threads described above will work together to help us
all be better prepared. And, while the reference library is still being built, the workshops are already under way, and are a great success. A one-day workshop in Uruguay last year, for example, has already led to a follow-up event organised by the national emergency authority, held in November this year. This included a more detailed tabletop exercise, and a visit to the cruise ship Zaandam. Here we see the ship's Master discussing emergency response issues with the workshop participants.
The IMRF will help organise a maritime MRO workshop anywhere in the world – for the need to prepare is a global one. Interested? Good: that's the first step to being prepared! Contact the IMRF project manager, David Jardine-Smith, for details: d.jardinesmith@IMRF.org.uk.