Sunday, July 18, 2010

From the archives

This press release announcing the implementation of the Amver system comes from the Coast Guard archives.

Hold until 3:00 P.M. Tuesday April 15, 1958.


NEW YORK, April 15- Vice Admiral Alfred C. Richmond, Commandant of the United States Coast Guard, today invited the merchant shipping industry to participate with the Coast Guard in a plan which would make more efficient the present Coast Guard Search and Rescue activities by providing more timely aid to distressed vessels and aircraft forced down at sea.

This proposed new plan, called the Merchant Vessel Reporting Program, calls upon all vessels of the United States registry at sea in the North Atlantic Maritime Region to report regularly their positions and other information as they successfully cross specified areas.

This information will be compiled at Coast Guard Rescue Control Centers where it will be mounted on mammoth charts to show the positions of all merchant ships at sea at any given moment.

In the event a place is forced down at sea or a ship is in distress, the pots will immediately show what merchant ships are in the immediate area of the disaster; whereupon these ships can be diverted to the scene, thus cutting important hours from the search and subsequent rescue.

This new plan, which goes into effect at Midnight, Greenwich Mean time, on June 30th, was announced today by Admiral Richmond before a group of ship owners and operators, and other important officials in the maritime world at a meeting called by Rear Admiral H. C. Perkins, Commander of the Third Coast Guard District, Eastern Area, with Headquarters in the Custom House, New York. Over one hundred men attended the meeting at the office of the Captain of the Port at Pier 9, East River.

The program, which is strictly voluntary and which involves no extra cost to the shipping companies, is an extension of Coast Guard responsibilities under the National Search and Rescue Plan. The information collected under the new plan, according to Admiral Richmond, will fill a vital need of the Coast Guard in the conduct of its Search and Rescue operations.

Although Admiral Richmond's appeal is directed at this time to U.S. flag ships, registered vessels of all nations are invited to participate on a voluntary basis by sending in position reports under the same rules as for United States vessels.

After Admiral Richmond's remarks, Captain O.C. Rohnke, USCG, discussed the specific rules and answered questions from the audience.

Enroll your vessel today and continue the tradition. Happy Birthday Amver!

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