CHENNAI: The 10th edition of the National Maritime Search - Rescue Exercise culminated today with a grand display of sea exercise off Chennai on Sunday. The sea exercise involved two large-scale contingencies with participation of 16 Indian Coast Guard (ICG) ships, 1 naval ship, 6 ICG aircrafts, 1 naval advanced light helicopter ALH, 1 IAF helicopter, passenger vessel Swarajdweep, 1 tug boat from Chennai Port Trust and 1 boat from the Customs.
The first contingency simulated distress onboard a passenger vessel having 500 passengers onboard whereas the 2nd scenario depicted ditching of a civil aircraft with 200 passengers.
The response matrix in the sea exercise involved various methodology to evacuate distressed passengers wherein the advent of new-age technology such as use of remote controlled lifebuoy was demonstrated.
Among the air elements used in the sea exercise, the rescue modalities demonstration by the newly inducted Advanced Light Helicopter (ALH-MK-III) highlighted the ease and precision of using the state-of-art aircraft in large scale rescue operation.
The two day exercise was inaugurated by Defence Secretary Ajay Kumar on Saturday. The exercise being conducted under the aegis of the National Maritime Search and Rescue Board (NMSARB) is hosted by the Indian Coast Guard. In addition to 51 participants from national maritime search and rescue stakeholders, the exercise was attended by 24 foreign observers from 16 friendly foreign countries.