SA’S SAR System, It's Governance, Regulation and Oversight

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SA’S SAR System, It's Governance, Regulation and Oversight

Unread post by Heksie » Thu Oct 29, 2015 3:51 pm

South Africa’s SAR System, It's Governance, Regulation and Oversight

Overview

SAR systems can be established on a national or regional level, or both. National SAR systems can take the form of a single or multi-agencies approach, with a committee established to co-ordinate the efforts of all the multiple agencies to provide the state with the requisite SAR capability.

South Africa, as a signatory to the Safety Of Life At Sea (SOLAS) Convention,1974, the International Convention on Maritime Search and Rescue,1979, and Annex 12 to the Convention on International Civil Aviation,1944, has accepted the obligation to provide aeronautical and maritime SAR co-ordination and services in her territories, territorial seas, and the high seas within her search and rescue region.

South Africa preferred a multi-agency approach mainly because she does not have dedicated SAR resources. When necessary, other government departments, private and commercial undertakings, voluntary organizations are diverted from their core functions by charter, arrangement, agreement and request to fulfill her SAR obligations.

South Africa has established a national SAR organization by agreement, comprising of organizations alluded to above to provide South Africa with a world-renowned Search and Rescue capability or function.



2. Organization and Management

There are two basic types of SAR management, namely administration and operations. In the South African context, SAR operations have been delegated to the South African Search and Rescue (SASAR) organization in terms of the South African Maritime and Aeronautical Search and Rescue Act, 2002 (Act no.44 of 2002 as amended 2013).

The Act make membership of certain government departments and agencies to SASAR mandatory, while encouraging voluntary membership to SASAR by certain organizations or institutions.

The Act also articulates to what the functions of SASAR should be. In terms thereof, SASAR must within its means and capabilities co-ordinate its measures to:

a) Search for, assist and, where appropriate, effect a rescue operation for:

· A survivor of aircraft crashes or forced landings;

· The crew and passengers of vessels in distress;

· Survivors of maritime casualties within SASAR’s area of responsibility; and

· Survivors of any military aircraft or vessels accidents or incidents if such aircraft or vessel is not engaged in an act of war.

b) Co-ordinate the evacuation of a seriously injured or ill person from a vessel at sea where the person's condition is such that he or she must obtain medical treatment sooner than that vessel would be able to get him or her to a suitable medical facility.

SAR regulation and administration resides with the Department of Transport assisted in this regard by the SASAR Executive and Management Committee.


3.Role of the Department of Transport in SAR

The Department of Transport is the custodian and champion of SAR services in South Africa. It has the overall responsibility for planning, establishing, organization staffing, equipping and managing the SAR system in South Africa. In pursuance of its role, the Department of Transport, in consultation with the SASAR Executive Committee execute the following functions:

a) Develop, co-ordinate, administer, review and evaluate plans, legislation, policies, procedures, standards and training requirements for SASAR co-operation and co-ordination;
b) Establish and support the Rescue Co-ordination Centres and Sub-centres;
c) Support, assist and chair SAR Co-ordinating Committee, in the case of South Africa, the SASAR Executive Committee;
d) Promote SAR system effectiveness and commitment to SAR objectives;
e) Work nationally, regionally and internationally to establish recognized SAR regions, close and effective working relationships, use of common procedures and expedient exchanges of SAR information.
f) Co-ordinate plans and procedures with other organizations that support, participate in or provide resources for SAR operations;
g) Maintain SAR plans, SASAR Policy Manuals and other SAR directives;
h) Establish and maintain liaison with appropriate SAR contacts, nationally, regionally, and internationally;
i) Develop the SAR budget and administer appropriate funds;
j) Maintain SAR data, a SAR library and SAR statistics and conduct review SAR case studies;
k) Develop SAR agreements and improved international SAR capabilities and procedures;
l) Promote efficient and effective use of all SAR resources;
m) Improve SAR communications;
n) Encourage joint training and exercise leading to the development of improved SAR procedures and technology;
o) Initiate, review and evaluate SAR research and development efforts;
p) Participate in SAR seminars and workshops;
q) Promote safety programmes to decrease distress incidents;
r) Ensure and facilitate the development of contingency plans for SAR resources to respond to natural and man-made disasters;
s) Promote visits between SAR programme personnel and among RCC and RSC personnel and others with special expertise related to SAR or SAR support; and
t) Oversee the SAR training programme

4. The SASAR Executive Committee

Both the IMO and ICAO encourage member states to establish what is referred to as the SAR Co-ordinating Committee either on a national or regional level to improve and support the SAR system or programme. In South Africa, a SAR Co-ordinating Committee has been established on a national level in terms of an Act of Parliament and is known as the SASAR Executive Committee.

The terms of reference of the Executive Committee are enshrined in the SASAR Constitution and are basically the following:

a) To provide a standing forum for co-ordination of administrative and operational SAR matters;
b) To provide an interface with other national and international organizations involved in emergency services;
c) To develop, maintain and oversee the SASAR Policy Manual;
d) To promote the effective use of all available facilities for SAR;
e) To serve as a co-operative forum to exchange information and develop position and policies of interest to more than one party to the SAR programme;\
f) To promote close co-operation and co-ordination between civilian and military authorities for the provision of effective SAR services;
g) To improve co-operation among aeronautical and marine SAR components as well as other disaster management agencies (land based infrastructure) for the provision of effective SAR services; and
h) To determine other ways to enhance the overall effectiveness and efficiency of SAR services within South Africa and to standardize SAR procedures and equipment where practicable.

The SASAR Executive Committee is the policy-making and governing body of the SASAR organization.

It is composed of representatives from the following organizations / institutions:

a) Department of Transport;
b) South African National Defence Force (SANDF);
c) South African Police Services (SAPS);
d) Transnet National Ports Authority (TNPA);
e) Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (ICASA);
f) Telkom SA;
g) South African Airways;
h) Air Traffic and Navigation Services (ATNS);
i) South African Maritime Safety Authority (SAMSA);
j) South African Civil Aviation Authority (SACAA);
k) Department of Sports and Recreation;
l) Department of Health;
m) Department of Local Government and Traditional Affairs (DLGTA)
n) Airline Association of South Africa
o) Department of International Relations and Cooperation (DIRCO)
p) Department of Home Affairs
q) Department of Environmental Affairs
r) South African Weather Services

The Executive Committee is required by law to meet at least twice per annum. The Department of Transport provides the chair for the Executive Committee.

5. The SASAR Management Committee

The purpose of the Management Committee is to advise the Executive Committee on any matter that may have policy and financial Implications as well as to deal with urgent day-to-day administrative matters that need to be sanctioned by the Executive Committee.

The goals and objectives of the Management Committee shall be:

a) To assess emerging technologies and other environmental changes and advise the Executive Committee accordingly;
b) To advise the Executive Committee on the appropriateness and necessity for developed SAR plans, legislation, policies, rules, treaties or agreements;
c) To ensure a seamless administration of the SAR Programme;
d) To ensure that the limited search and rescue resources are used in the most economic, efficient and effective way;
e) To ensure that SAR operations are conducted in accordance with laid down standards and recommended practices as reflected in this SASAR Policy Manual and as considered the norm in terms of International Conventions; and
f) To take decisions on operational and administrative issues that may not impact on search and rescue policy, and does not necessarily need the approval of the Executive Committee.

The Management Committee shall be composed of as follows:

a) Head of SASAR Secretariat;
b) Head of Aeronautical SAR Operations;
c) Head of Maritime SAR Operations;
d) MRCC Chief; and
e) ARCC Chief.

The Department of Transport presides over the Management Committee’s entire meetings. The Management Committee meets at least four times per annum.



6. SAR Operations Management

Operations management includes routine and emergency activities supporting SAR response operation. In South Africa, structures such as SASAR Operational Committees, SASAR Sub-Committees, Rescue Co-ordination Centres and Sub-centres have been established and mandated to ensure the effective and efficient co-ordination of search and rescue operations in South Africa’s search and rescue regions.

In terms of the IAMSAR manual, the role that should be played by officials staffing these structures may be administrative and operational. Administrative duties are concerned with maintaining the centres in a continuous state of preparedness and operational duties are concerned with the efficient conduct of SAR operations.

In practice, Heads of these Sub-Committees, Committees and Centres performs the administrative functions and other staff members are only concerned with operational duties. The Heads of these centres and representatives from the agencies that host these centres either on a voluntary or contractual basis, also attends or participates in the meetings of the Executive and Management Committees thereby influencing the decisions made at these forums.

It must be emphasized that these centres, although designated SAR units, are performing their delegated functions on behalf of SASAR and the Department of Transport and are therefore part of the SAR facilities used to conduct SAR operations. They are therefore accountable to the SASAR Executive Committee and the Department of Transport.

6.1 SASAR Aeronautical Sub-Committee

The purpose of the Aeronautical Sub-Committee is to assess the SAR operational policy and make recommendations to the Management Committee and the Executive Committee whenever any change is necessary. The goals and objectives of the Aeronautical Sub-Committee are the following:

(a) To assess emerging technologies and other environmental changes and make recommendations to the Management Committee and the Executive Committee accordingly;
(b) To develop and review aeronautical SAR plans;
(c) To ensure the smooth running of the Aeronautical Rescue Co-ordination Centre and Rescue Sub-Centres and advise the Management and Executive Committee on any matter that may hamper the smooth running of these Centres;
(d) To ensure that the limited search and rescue resources are used in the most economic, efficient and effective way;
(e) To ensure that SAR operations are conducted in accordance with laid down standards and recommended practices as reflected in this SASAR Policy Manual and as considered the norm in terms of international conventions; and
(f) To take decisions on operational issues that may not impact on search and rescue policy, and does not necessarily need the approval of the Management Committee and the Executive Committee.

The Aeronautical Sub-Committee may consist of representatives of the following institutions or organizations -

a) Department of Transport;
b) South African National Defence Force;
c) South African Police Services;
d) South African Airways;
e) Namibia, Swaziland and Lesotho;
f) Air Traffic and Navigation Services;
g) Department of International Relations and Cooperations ;
h) Provincial Disaster Management Committees;
i) Municipal Disaster Management Committees;
j) Hamnet;
k) Mountain Club of South Africa;
l) The Off Road Rescue Unit;
m) SAMSA; and
n) SACAA
o) Institution for Aviation Psycology
p) Working of Fire
q) Metro Services and Emergency Medical Services

The Director-General shall appoint a suitable person as nominated by the Management of institutions designated as RCCs to serve as the Head of Aeronautical SAR Operations as well as Chairperson of the Aeronautical Sub-Committee. The Aeronautical Sub-Committee shall meet at least twice a year at the time and place determined by the majority of members.

6.2 SASAR MARITIME SUB-COMMITTEE

The purpose of the Maritime Sub-Committee shall be to assess the Maritime SAR Operational policy and make recommendations to the Management Committee and the Executive Committee whenever any change is necessary. The goals and objectives of the Maritime Sub-Committee shall be-

(a) To assess emerging technologies and other environmental changes and make recommendations to the Management Committee and the Executive Committee accordingly;
(b) To develop and review maritime SAR plans;
(c) To ensure the smooth running of the Maritime Rescue Co-ordination Centre and Rescue Sub centres and advise the Management and Executive Committee on any matter that may result in the malfunctioning of these Centres;
(d) To ensure that the limited search and rescue resources are used in the most economic, efficient and effective way;
(e) To ensure that maritime SAR operations are conducted in accordance with laid down standards and recommended practices as reflected in the SASAR Policy Manual and as considered the norm in terms of International Conventions; and
(f) To take decisions on operational issues that may not impact on search and rescue policy, and does not necessarily need the approval of the Management Committee and the Executive Committee.

The Maritime Sub-Committee may consist of representatives of the following institutions or organizations -

(a) Department of Transport;
(b) South African National Defence Force;
(c) South African Police Service;
(d) Telkom SA;
(e) ICASA;
(f) Air Traffic and Navigation Services;
(g) Department of International Relations and Cooperation;
(h) Provincial Disaster Management Committees;
(i) Metro Services and Emergency Medical Services;
(j) NSRI;
(k) SANAP
(l) SAMSA
(m) Titan Helicopters
(n) Petro SA;
(o) Namibia and Mozambique;
(p) Transnet National Ports Authority; and
(q) Smit Amandla Marine

The Director-General shall appoint a suitable person as nominated by the Management of institutions designated as RCCs to serve as the Head of Maritime SAR Operations as well as Chairperson of the Maritime Sub-Committee. The Maritime Sub-Committee shall meet at least twice a year at the time and place determined by the majority of members.

6.3 Rescue Co-ordination Centres

The RCC is an operations facility responsible for promoting efficient organization of SAR service and for co-ordinating the conduct of SAR operations within an SRR. An RCC co-ordinates but does not necessarily provide, SAR facilities through the internationally recognized SRR described in either the Regional Air Navigational Plans (RANP’s) of ICAO or the Global SAR plans of the IMO.

Aeronautical SAR responsibility may be met by means of an Aeronautical Rescue Coordination Centres (ARCC) and the Maritime SAR responsibility through the maritime RCC (MRCC). Both the IMO and ICAO advocates for the combining of their SAR resources into a Joint RCC (JRCC), responsible for both aeronautical and maritime SAR incidents or co-locating their maritime and aeronautical RCC’s.

Although South Africa has currently opted for separate RCC’s, she would keep her mind open for the possibility of a JRCC if circumstance permits.

6.3.1 The Aeronautical Rescue Co-Ordination Centre

The Aeronautical Rescue Co-ordination Centre (ARCC) is under the control of the ARCC Chief and is primarily responsible for providing assistance, search and rescue in the aeronautical area of the South African area of responsibility. The ARCC Chief is accountable to the Head of aeronautical search and rescue operations. The ATNS Area Control Centre at the O.R. Tambo International Airport has been designated as the South African ARCC.

6.3.2 The Maritime Rescue Co-Ordination Centre

The Maritime Rescue Co-ordination Centre (MRCC) is under the control of the MRCC Chief and is primarily responsible for providing assistance, search and rescue in the sea area of the South African area of responsibility. The MRCC Chief is accountable to the Head of maritime search and rescue operations. A dedicated MRCC has been established and is located at Plattekloof in Cape Town

6.3.3 Rescue Sub-Centres

To ensure effective conduct of SAR operations, South Africa has decided to establish Rescue Sub-centres with their own Rescue Sub-region (SRS). The rationale behind this decision is to ensure direct and effective control over SAR facilities scattered all over the country. The Rescue Sub-centres are established on a permanent and/or es ad hoc basis.

6.3.3.1 Aeronautical RSC’s

Each ATSU within the RSA can be appointed as an RSC on an ad hoc basis. All neighbouring territories within the aeronautical SRR are considered permanent RSCs. These units are tasked permanently by the appropriate RCC to carry out certain duties of the RCC or on an ad hoc basis when required.

6.3.3.2 Maritime RSCs

The area of responsibility falling under the control of the MRCC that is adjacent to the coastline of the RSA is divided into sub-regions which fall under the control of the Harbour Masters of Walvis Bay, Saldanha, Cape Town, Port Elizabeth, East London, Durban, Mossel Bay and Richards Bay. Within each sub-region the Harbour Master’s office acts as a rescue sub-centre (RSC).

The RSCs are accountable to the MRCC Chief. Should an operation falling within the scope of the RSC escalate, or be such that it is beyond the capability of the RSC, it will immediately be handed over to the MRCC.

6.3.3.2.1 Maritime Secondary-RSCs

Within the sub-region of a Harbour Master, the various NSRI stations, act as secondary-rescue sub-centres (sec-RSCs) for the area that falls within their scope and capability. Should an operation falling within the scope of the sec-RSCs escalate, or be such that it is beyond the capability of the sec-RSC, it will immediately be handed over to the RSC. The sec-RSCs are accountable to the Chief of the RSC in whose area of responsibility they are stationed and/or operate.

Santjie White
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Mauler
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Re: SA’S SAR System, It's Governance, Regulation and Oversig

Unread post by Mauler » Tue Nov 10, 2015 7:35 pm

Heksie wrote: 6.1 SASAR Aeronautical Sub-Committee

The purpose of the Aeronautical Sub-Committee is to assess the SAR operational policy and make recommendations to the Management Committee and the Executive Committee whenever any change is necessary. The goals and objectives of the Aeronautical Sub-Committee are the following:

(a) To assess emerging technologies and other environmental changes and make recommendations to the Management Committee and the Executive Committee accordingly;
(b) To develop and review aeronautical SAR plans;
(c) To ensure the smooth running of the Aeronautical Rescue Co-ordination Centre and Rescue Sub-Centres and advise the Management and Executive Committee on any matter that may hamper the smooth running of these Centres;
(d) To ensure that the limited search and rescue resources are used in the most economic, efficient and effective way;
(e) To ensure that SAR operations are conducted in accordance with laid down standards and recommended practices as reflected in this SASAR Policy Manual and as considered the norm in terms of international conventions; and
(f) To take decisions on operational issues that may not impact on search and rescue policy, and does not necessarily need the approval of the Management Committee and the Executive Committee.

The Aeronautical Sub-Committee may consist of representatives of the following institutions or organizations -

a) Department of Transport;
b) South African National Defence Force;
c) South African Police Services;
d) South African Airways;
e) Namibia, Swaziland and Lesotho;
f) Air Traffic and Navigation Services;
g) Department of International Relations and Cooperations ;
h) Provincial Disaster Management Committees;
i) Municipal Disaster Management Committees;
j) Hamnet;
k) Mountain Club of South Africa;
l) The Off Road Rescue Unit;
m) SAMSA; and
n) SACAA
o) Institution for Aviation Psycology
p) Working of Fire
q) Metro Services and Emergency Medical Services
I find it intriguing that, other than SAA, no pilot or aviation entities form part of the "Aeronautical Sub-committee", yet there are members like Hamnet, the Mountain Club, Off Road Rescue, Working on Fire, etc.

Surely the very people who are most affected by SAR, and especially the other airlines (perhaps through AASA), pilot (most especially ALPA-SA) and aviation representative organizations should be part of any consultative process?
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Re: SA’S SAR System, It's Governance, Regulation and Oversig

Unread post by Heksie » Mon Nov 16, 2015 10:11 am

Just for clarity.

The SASAR Executive Committee is the policy-making and governing body of the SASAR organization.

It is composed of representatives from the following organizations / institutions:

a) Department of Transport;
b) South African National Defence Force (SANDF);
c) South African Police Services (SAPS);
d) Transnet National Ports Authority (TNPA);
e) Independent Communications Authority of South Africa (ICASA);
f) Telkom SA;
g) South African Airways;
h) Air Traffic and Navigation Services (ATNS);
i) South African Maritime Safety Authority (SAMSA);
j) South African Civil Aviation Authority (SACAA);
k) Department of Sports and Recreation;
l) Department of Health;
m) Department of Local Government and Traditional Affairs (DLGTA)
n) Airline Association of South Africa
o) Department of International Relations and Cooperation (DIRCO)
p) Department of Home Affairs
q) Department of Environmental Affairs
r) South African Weather Services


"The Act make membership of certain government departments and agencies to SASAR mandatory, while encouraging voluntary membership to SASAR by certain organizations or institutions."
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Re: SA’S SAR System, It's Governance, Regulation and Oversig

Unread post by 121.5 » Sun Dec 11, 2016 6:29 pm

Hi Mauler
Mauler wrote: I find it intriguing that, other than SAA, no pilot or aviation entities form part of the "Aeronautical Sub-committee", yet there are members like Hamnet, the Mountain Club, Off Road Rescue, Working on Fire, etc.

Surely the very people who are most affected by SAR, and especially the other airlines (perhaps through AASA), pilot (most especially ALPA-SA) and aviation representative organizations should be part of any consultative process?
The Aeronautical Sub-Committee's function is assisting the state in maintaining an operational readiness for SAR, the harmonisation of policy and the the coordination of resources. It if effectively a mechanism for SAR resources to interact face-to-face with the Authority Having Jurisdiction (DoT via SASAR) in a less urgent context than a SAR Op. The Mountain Club, HAMNET and Off Road Rescue are frequently involved in the sharp end of SAR Ops, hence their involvement.

Hope this clarifies the "why".

Regards

Rob
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Re: SA’S SAR System, It's Governance, Regulation and Oversig

Unread post by Mauler » Mon Dec 12, 2016 12:08 am

121.5 wrote:Hope this clarifies the "why".
Not really.

Heksie does point out that voluntary membership is encouraged by the Act by "certain organisations or institutions", pilot and aircraft owner/operator organisations are notably absent, when their members are very much at the sharp end of any SAR activities!

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