RESCUE: A false alarm mobilized the Saint-Martin SNSM for nothing

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Last Thursday, the members of the SNSM station of Saint-Martin received a call from the CROSS-AG (Regional operational center for surveillance and rescue in the Antilles-Guyana) for the report of a distress rocket. This would have been seen at sea by a witness on land, between Friars' Bay and the tip of Terres Basses. After a conference call with him, the SNSM of Saint-Martin is hired by the CROSS.

Immediately, four volunteer crew members got ready with their equipment, while waiting for the return of a substitute skipper to take charge of the crew.

At 20:59 p.m., the "Rescue Star" sailed towards Friars' Bay to make sure it was not a "Full Moon Party" on the beach.

At 21:11 p.m., the crew questioned a catamaran at anchor there, which had not seen a distress flare.

The CROSS having launched a Mayday Relay, a tanker at anchor in Marigot Bay gave the same answer: he had not seen a distress flare.

It takes more to discourage our rescuers. The sea is calm, and the visibility is good. Armed with their searchlights and thermal binoculars, they scan the horizon but see nothing. No boat debris, no life raft, no one in the water.

At 21:55 p.m., after a detailed report, the Rescue Star was given freedom of maneuver by the CROSS to reach its home port, the Fort Louis marina, while remaining vigilant.

15 minutes later, the volunteer crew members are back at the dock and unload their equipment, ready to leave, if necessary.

As usual, the SNSM station of Saint-Martin will file a complaint against X with the gendarmerie for useless deployment of material and human rescue means. In accordance with article 322.14 of the Civil Code, this may result in its author up to a fine of €30 and 000 years' imprisonment.

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