Jersey Coastguard & VTS publishes Annual Report for 2020

From Jersey Coastguard
9th July 2021

Jersey Coastguard has released its Annual Report for 2020, highlighting its core findings for the year together with those for St Helier’s Vessel Traffic Services (VTS).

This is the second time the report has been published and key findings in 2020 highlight the following:

  • Jersey Coastguard co-ordinated 177 ‘incidents’, with the most common reporting equipment or mechanical failure (53 reports). This was followed by “alarm with good intent” (AGI) of vessels/people appearing in difficulties” (34 reports), cut off by tides (21 reports) and “concern for welfare” (17 reports)
  • Search & Rescue (SAR) assets were ‘tasked’ a total of 348 times in 2020. ‘Tasked’ includes those occasions where SAR assets are requested to launch as well as those times they are ‘stood down’ before launch due to a material change in the circumstances of the incident. The asset ‘Other’ relates to non-declared SAR assets, which usually involved a fellow mariner providing assistance at sea
  • The majority of incidents took place within 3NM (nautical miles) of the shoreline, in particular along the south coast of the Island
  • RNLI lifeguards, which operated on Jersey beaches between May and end of October 2020 reported 221 incidents. Rip tides were the main cause of incidents (75%) followed by assisting those cut off by the tide (15%)
  • Despite Covid restrictions in the earlier part of the year, traffic remained high with over 14,000 traffic reports submitted during the year

Although all school visits, public engagements and ‘Open Days’ had to be cancelled in 2020 Jersey Coastguard launched its annual ‘Safety at Sea’ campaign online with a virtual presentation, focusing on the safety measures to be taken by young children taking to the water. In addition, social media interaction saw an increase in engagement and a new Instagram profile was created to reach further demographics. Jersey Coastguard’s new Trace application was rolled out for testing among commercial operations, which resulted in a significant reduction in radio traffic as more operators took advantage of this new online format to log transit reports. The new app has now been rolled out to a wider public audience as part of the annual Maritime Safety Week campaign in July 2021.

St Helier Vessel Traffic Services launched its second VTS Annual Service Provision Survey among maritime companies, including pilots, shipping agents and vessels, in order to gain a better understanding of the worthiness of the services provided by them. More than 90% of the feedback was positive towards the overall efficiency of the service provided by VTS.

Commenting on the Annual Report, which is once again available to view online, Jersey’s Harbourmaster, Captain Bill Sadler, said “This report once again gives a real insight into the professional work Jersey Coastguard undertakes alongside its partners in the search and rescue community, to deliver a resilient SAR framework. 2020 was a very challenging year for the entire community but water leisure activity appears to have increased and the work of the entire team continues at pace. As always, I would like to pay tribute to the team at Jersey Coastguard and thank and our fellow SAR agencies for their continued support in helping to protect our maritime community”

To view a copy of the report click here 

-Ends-

Jersey Coastguard