We consider AMVER to be one of the true “unsung heroes” of the maritime world. AMVER is the “Automated Mutual Assistance Vessel Rescue” system run by the US Coast Guard. Established in 1958, it is a computer-based voluntary global ship reporting system used worldwide by search and rescue authorities. Ships enrolled in the system report their positions periodically. When a distress signal is received anywhere in the world, the AMVER database identifies the closest ship that can render assistance and vectors that ship to the sailors in distress. At any one time there are over 5,000 AMVER enrolled ships at sea ready to render assistance. On average, every 33 hours an AMVER ship saves a life somewhere on the world’s oceans.
Here is an example of a rescue that took place just over a week ago, when the AMVER enrolled Stolt Invention rescued two Finnish sailors from their sailboat, Kamu, which was taking on water after being struck by a whale. AMVER makes the seas just a bit less dangerous and lonely.