Exercise tests out Montserrat's response to search and rescue emergency

A multi-agency exercise has been held in Montserrat as part of ongoing workshops and training delivered through the Overseas Territories Search and Rescue (OTSAR) project, overseen by the Maritime & Coastguard Agency.

The event was coordinated by members of the US Coast Guard and Her Majesty's Coastguard.

Montserrat had created its search and rescue plan template for dealing with incidents working with Phil and Rob as well as other experts from across the region. The plan has now been tested out through the interactive table top exercise.

Phil Bostock, from HM Coastguard said: 'Everyone's worked really hard to create this plan so that if a serious incident does happen at sea, everything falls into place in how to deal with it. One of the great things about this work is the way that people from across the search and rescue community give of their time and expertise to share best practice with each other.'

The OTSAR project is run as part of the Conflict, Stability and Security Fund and funded by the UK Government.

Phil Bostock said that it had been a good opportunity to get all the relevant people involved in search and rescue on Montserrat in an exercise.

'It's so important to test and retest these plans,' he said. 'It's only by making them as robust as possible and by finding out in an exercise whether there are any obvious flaws in them that everyone can be confident that if they ever need to put it into practice, everything is in place.