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H.E.R.O. Awards finalists announced

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The International Maritime Rescue Federation has announced the finalists for the 2017 H.E.R.O. Awards, recognizing some of the exceptional individuals and organizations around the world who go above and beyond in maritime search and rescue.

“We have received nominations from around the world and we would like to thank all those who entered an individual or organization for an award.” IMRF Chairman and Trustee, Udo Fox said “There were many, many extremely worthy candidates and organizations doing inspiring work.”

Finalists for the Individual award are Anton Tasanen for his rescue of a crew member overboard using the vessel’s mooring winch in rough seas near Finland, and Ray Burge for his actions that saved a husband and wife caught in strong currents and heavy seas in New Zealand.

Finalists for the Team award are the National Sea Rescue Institute WaterWise Academy in South Africa, which teaches about 330,000 disadvantaged children each year about water safety, and the Malta-based MOAS (the Migrant Offshore Aid Station) for tirelessly rescuing more than 1,800 desperate people from inadequate boats in the Mediterranean over Easter weekend.

Finalists for the Innovation and Technology award are the RNLI Future Leaders Project Team 2016, nominated for their program that focuses on new and developing search and rescue organizations around the world, and the MAR-SimNET Project, an interlinked simulator for maritime disasters which provides interorganizational training for all entities involved in a complex search and rescue operation, from maritime rescue coordination centers to coastal radio stations to SAR vessels on the water and SAR helicopters overhead.

Finalists for the Vladimir Maksimov Lifetime Achievement Award are Branko Rameša from   Croatian Search and Rescue, Croatia, and ADES (the Association of Maritime and River Rescue of Uruguay), with special recognition for the outstanding voluntary work undertaken by Captain Ramón Sagüés and Engineer Otto Vicente Muzzio to establish and develop this SAR institution.

Winners will be announced at an awards dinner held Nov. 2 at the RNLI College in Poole, U.K., and online. Anyone from the maritime industry is encouraged to visit the IMRF website, to read more about the finalists and to vote for the People’s Choice H.E.R.O. Award.

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