The Royal Solomon Island Police Force (RSIPF) Maritime Division successfully rescued eight passengers stranded between the Florida Islands (Ngella) and Guadalcanal on February 8, 2024.

According to Chief Superintendent Russell Tagini, Director of the Police Maritime Division, the boat encountered a fuel shortage issue outside Lungga and began drifting back towards Tulagi.

Upon receiving a distress call from the Maritime Rescue Coordination Centre (MRCC), our search and rescue team swiftly responded within 45 minutes, ensuring the safe retrieval of the passengers.

To ensure your safety before embarking on a journey, it's essential to adequately plan your trip. Here are some crucial safety tips to consider:

  • Inform a family member of your travel plans, including your destination and expected arrival time.
  • Check weather updates through reliable sources such as SIBC or by calling the Met Service at toll-free number 933 or via phones 36310 or 24219.
  • In case of adverse weather conditions during your trip, seek shelter until the sea calms.
  • Ensure your boat is in good condition and that the outboard motor is regularly serviced and maintained.
  • Verify the experience of your skipper in operating boats before entrusting them with your journey.
  • Avoid overloading your boat beyond its capacity.
  • Wear life jackets and carry essential supplies including food, water, paddles, first aid kit, anchor and rope, signaling mirror, tools, bucket, torch, phone, flares, and EPIRB (Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacon).
  • Carry extra fuel to prevent unforeseen fuel shortages.
  • Refrain from allowing an intoxicated skipper to operate the boat or accompany them under such circumstances.

In case of emergencies at sea, contact the Maritime Rescue Coordination Centre (MRCC) at phone numbers 21609 or 27685, toll-free number 977, or reach out to the RSIPF National Communication Centre at phone number 23666 or toll-free number 999.

Source: RSIPF