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Coastguard Training Increases Pacific Capability

Coastguard Training Increases Pacific Capability

Coastguard New Zealand is helping to boost Search and Rescue capability in the Pacific with the training of three Niuean crew this week in Rangiora.

The training will equip the crew with a number of the skills required to operate a new $367,000 Search and Rescue (SAR) vessel. The vessel has been built in Rangiora as part of the Pacific Maritime Safety Programme, a joint initiative between Maritime New Zealand and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade.

The crew will complete the Coastguard Boating Education Maritime VHF Operator, Radar Operator and GPS Operator courses as well as the Day Skipper course which covers boat basics, navigation, rules and regulations and emergency procedures.

Currently SAR incidents in Niue are managed using vessels of opportunity which, at times, has required an Orion aircraft to fly from New Zealand at considerable cost.

“We’re pleased to be working alongside Maritime New Zealand and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Trade in delivery this great initiative,” says Coastguard New Zealand CEO, Patrick Holmes. “With the delivery of the new SAR vessel and ongoing training from our Coastguard Boating Education tutors, Niue will have the resources to carry out a SAR response when required.”

Coastguard Boating Education is the leading provider of recreational boating education in New Zealand, last year over 11,200 certificates were issued.

“In addition to meeting the needs of recreational boaties, a number of our courses form part of the training for Coastguard Volunteer Search and Rescue crews,” says Mike Brown, Coastguard Boating Education General Manager.

“With a 40 year history in boating education we are pleased to assist our Pacific neighbours.”

The Niue crew are in the country until 16 September and will start their duties once the new SAR vessel is officially handed over to the Government on 18 October.


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