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COSPAS-SARSAT Rescues as of:




August 15, 2008


Number of Persons Rescued (To Date) in the United States:  191



-         Rescues at sea:  148 people rescued in 42 incidents

-         Aviation rescues:  3 people rescued in 3 incidents

-         PLB rescues:  40 people rescued in 25 incidents


·         Worldwide – Over 24,500+ People Rescued  (since 1982)

·         United States – 5,949 People Rescued  (since 1982)




Numbers from 2007



353 people rescued in 130 incidents in the United States



-         Rescues at sea:  235 people rescued in 73 incidents

-         Aviation rescues:  30 people rescued in 19 incidents

-         PLB rescues:  88 people rescued in 38 incidents



Current Press Releases


NOAA Satellites Primed for Spike in Summer Distress Calls 

Click here to read NOAA’s latest Press Release From June 4, 2008



NOAA Satellites Help Save 23 People in the North Atlantic

Click here to read NOAA’s Press Release from April 11, 2008


121.5 MHz EPIRBs become illegal to operate on January 1, 2007

Click here to read the USCG Press Release *

*Will take you to a non-government web-site

SARSAT System Overview

Around the world...around the clock...NOAA proudly stands watch.  As an integral part of worldwide search and rescue, NOAA operates the Search And Rescue Satellite Aided Tracking (SARSAT) System to detect and locate mariners, aviators, and recreational enthusiasts in distress almost anywhere in the world at anytime and in almost any condition. 

The SARSAT system uses NOAA satellites in low-earth and geostationary orbits to detect and locate aviators, mariners, and land-based users in distress. The satellites relay distress signals from emergency beacons to a network of ground stations and ultimately to the U.S. Mission Control Center (USMCC) in Suitland, Maryland. The USMCC processes the distress signal and alerts the appropriate search and rescue authorities to who is in distress and, more importantly, where they are located. Truly, SARSAT takes the "search" out of search and rescue!


NOAA-SARSAT is a part of the international Cospas-Sarsat Program to which 38 nations and two independent SAR organizations belong to. To find out more about SARSAT please feel free to explore our website. We hope you enjoy your visit! 


SARSAT - A Lifeline To Survival!