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The International Maritime Organization (IMO) publishes Model Courses, designed as templates for Member States’ use in developing training across a range of maritime subjects. There are three courses on SAR, related to the three volumes of the International Aeronautical and Maritime Search and Rescue (IAMSAR) Manual.

The latest editions of the courses on SAR administration (IAMSAR Volume I) and the On Scene Coordinator function (Volume III) were published in 2014, and are available from the IMRF’s online bookshop at However, the course on the SAR Mission Coordinator function (Volume II) has fallen out of the review process, and is not currently available.

At its meeting in March 2017 the IMO’s Sub-Committee on Navigation, Communications and Search and Rescue (NCSR) agreed to re-develop the SAR mission coordination course, with the aim of approving the revised course at its 2019 session for subsequent re-publication later that year. The United States will lead the re-development of this model course, assisted by other States and NGOs, including the IMRF.

The IMRF’s interest in all three of the IMO’s Model Courses on SAR stems from our fundamental aim of improving maritime SAR globally. This includes facilitating training in SAR administration and operations, including SAR mission coordination and on-scene coordination. Up-to-date courses approved by the IMO are a very useful tool in this respect.

We will therefore support the re-development of the currently missing SAR Mission Coordinator Model Course as best we can.

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