Over the weekend, the Western Naval Command received an urgent request for a Medical Evacuation (MEDEVAC) from the Maritime Rescue Coordination Centre in Mumbai. The request was to rescue a Filipino citizen aboard the MV Saipem Endeavour, who was suffering from acute appendicitis and needed immediate medical attention. The ship was being towed and was located about 55 nautical miles Southwest of INS Shikra, the helicopter base of the Western Naval Command in Colaba.
In response to the distress call, both the Indian Navy and Indian Coast Guard collaborated for the MEDEVAC mission. They deployed a Sea King helicopter from INS Shikra and the Coast Guard ship Samrat for the operation. However, the mission was not without its challenges, as it had to be carried out in adverse weather conditions with low visibility and a low cloud base.
Despite the difficult circumstances, the Sea King helicopter bravely took off at 9 am to rescue the patient. The ship was experiencing heavy rolling and turbulence, making the operation even more challenging. Nevertheless, the skilled teams managed to safely land the helicopter on the ship and evacuate the patient.
The helicopter then returned to INS Shikra around 10 am, bringing the patient back. At the base, the individual received initial medical treatment before being transferred to the naval hospital Asvini for further care.
The Coast Guard received the request for medical evacuation from the ship’s agent, M/s Benline Agencies in Mumbai. The 37-year-old patient was on a ship traveling from Dubai to Colombo, passing about 154 nautical miles from Mumbai in the Arabian Sea.
Due to the critical condition of the patient, the Coast Guard’s ship Samrat, which was already on patrol in the area, was immediately diverted for the rescue mission. However, the prevailing weather conditions with strong winds and rough seas made it challenging to disembark the patient directly from the ship. Considering the distance and weather conditions, the Coast Guard sought assistance from the Indian Navy and requested the launch of a helicopter for the medical evacuation.
Thanks to the combined efforts of the Indian Navy and Indian Coast Guard, the patient was successfully rescued and received the necessary medical attention. The joint MEDEVAC mission showcased the dedication and efficiency of these maritime forces in saving lives, even under challenging circumstances.