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Jersey Coastguard is charged with the provision of 24/7 responsibility for safer seas, along with the security and protection of the maritime environment for Jersey’s territorial waters. They are a Category 1 emergency responder on the Island.
Jersey coastguard co-ordinates all Search and Rescue situations within Jersey’s Territorial Waters, which often require joint operations in conjunction with local leisure vessels, the other emergency services and Search and Rescue Assets, including the 3 RNLI lifeboats, RNLI beach lifeguards, 2 Fire Service rescue craft, Channel Islands Air Search spotter plane, French and UK Helicopters. Other jurisdictions such as Guernsey, Alderney and France may also be involved. Jersey Coastguard also have regular and emergency liaison with UK and French Maritime and Coastguard Authorities to implement the Manche Plan emergency co-operation agreement and maintain SAR (Search and Rescue) operational requirements.
Station ID, channels and frequencies
Maritime Mobile Service Identity Number (MMSI) - 002320060
|VHF Channels Used by Jersey Coastguard|
|VHF Channel||Frequencies MHz||Channel Type||Comments||Aerial site|
|16||156.8||International Distress, Safety and Calling||Maintains a listening watch||Fremont, Gorey, St Helier|
|82||157.125 161.725||Working||Maintains a listening watch||Fremont, St Helier|
|25||157.250 161.850||Working||Secondary working channel||Fremont, St Helier|
|67||156.375||UK small ships Safety channel||Fremont|
|70||156.525||Digital Select calling||Maintains a listening watch||St Helier, St Ouens|
Jersey Coastguard uses the latest technology in their Maritime Operations Centre for routine and SAR working. A coastguard officer has available at their desk a communications screen which has VHF Radio, TETRA (Terrestrial Trunked Radio) and phones integrated into one user friendly screen. They have an electronic radio and incident log. Electronic charting (ECDIS) with AIS (Automatic Identification System) and RADAR overlay, with a direction finder interface displaying the direction of VHF calls on ch16 from the old radio tower at La Corbière. For Search and Rescue planning the latest SARIS software is used allowing the officers to input data relating to an incident which then uses multiple calculations involving wind, tide and drift formulas to predict where a person or object may have drifted to. Jersey Coastguard also has an emergency response vehicle, which is equipped with TETRA and VHF radios. 123 lifebelts are located around the harbours and island.
Operation, education and sea safety
Jersey Coastguard’s Maritime Operations Centre is located in Saint Helier and is manned 24 hours a day 365 days a year, by a team of specialised Marine Officers who are trained as Search Mission Coordinators (SMCs) to manage and plan any search and rescue scenario. Routine and Safety Broadcasts are issued by Jersey Coastguard on VHF ch82 throughout the day.
Jersey Coastguard launched the C-SIS Scheme (Coastguard Safety Identification scheme) in 2014 for water craft that do not fall under the category required by the law to be registered. This scheme assists with locating owners of craft if they're lost and come ashore or are found adrift at sea.
Jersey Coastguard works closely with local Primary and Secondary schools delivering an education programme on Sea Safety focusing on beach safety, dangers of rip currents, being stranded by the tide and importantly who to call in an emergency. These key messages are also promoted at other Island events which Jersey coastguard attends. Jersey Coastguard is also involved with ‘advice on board’ and lifejacket clinics run in conjunction with the RNLI.
History and background
Jersey is an independent Crown dependency located in the English Channel close to northern France. Jersey’s territorial waters encompass approximately 840 square miles with more than 28 miles of coastline.
In May 2007, Jersey Coastguard was launched from an amalgamation of services provided by Jersey Harbours, primarily the ‘Jersey Radio’ coastal station, for the States of Jersey , with official recognition as a Category 1 emergency responder on the Island, along with the Police, Ambulance and the Fire and Rescue Service.
In October 2015 Jersey Harbours and Jersey Airport became incorporated under Ports of Jersey with the primary objective to provide essential public services to the island in a sustainable manner. Jersey Coastguard moved with Jersey Harbours under Ports of Jersey who now provide this service for the Island community.
Between 2002 and 2015 Jersey Coastguard have dealt with between 99 and 175 incidents annually.
- "BMT's SARIS 4 technology is world first for Jersey Coastguard". BMT Group. 28 February 2011.
- "Coastguard safety ID scheme launched". Jersey Government. 27 May 2014.
- "Harbours (Inshore Safety) (Jersey) Regulations 2012". Jersey Law.
- "Jersey Coastguard statistics". States of Jersey.