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AMVER program celebrates milestone

The Coast Guard saves thousands of lives each year, but they can’t do it alone. The Automated Mutual Assistance Vessel Rescue System, otherwise known as AMVER, allows for the rescue of remote offshore vessels in distress through a network of participating commercial ship. To celebrate its 25th anniversary, AMVER is giving awards to each participating company, according to

Last year, AMVER ships saved 450 lives, and there are 3,300 ships around the world that are available for search-and-rescue operations, according to the report. These ships send a sail plan, indicate a point of departure, port of destination, and their course and speed to the AMVER computer center, which can pinpoint the position of the ship at any point during the voyage. When the Coast Guard receives a distress call from a vessel or aircraft, they can request this data to locate any AMVER ships that may be nearby.

Companies that received top awards include Columbia Shipmanagement with 21 awards including one gold pendant, SMT Shipmanagement Transport with 20 awards, one gold, and one purple pendant, and Bernhard Schulte Shipmanagement with 17 awards, two gold, and four plaques, according to the report.

For information on AMVER, visit

— Elizabeth Ellis