Safe marine fieldwork – higher risks in remote areas require advanced rescue training

Juergen.Laudien [ at ]


Marine science is often based on extensive field campaigns for sampling and in situ-observations or -measurements. Many expeditions target remote areas, where the national rescue network is not thoroughly established. As technical work bears significantly more risks for accidents a comprehensive risk assessment during the planning phase of field work is highly recommended and for some activities (e.g. scientific diving, using a boat in remote areas) a basic requirement. On the other hand a sound expertise in swimming, first aid, and conducting marine risk assessments prevents major harm and ensures successful field trips. Amongst others, the German Lifesaving Society (Deutsche Lebens-Rettungs-Gesellschaft e.V., DLRG) offers practical training courses providing the respective competence. The non-governmental organisation is the largest voluntary water rescue organisation worldwide and its mission is to increase water safeness. Annually, six million hours of voluntary work are carried out in more than 2,000 local sub-divisions in Germany and abroad. Its key tasks are i) education in swimming, lifesaving and first aid, ii) increasing the public awareness of risks at and in the water, and iii) the national onshore water rescue service. More than 40,000 qualified voluntary lifeguards are active to confer security for bathers and aquatic sportspersons and since 1950 more than 21 million swim certificates and over four million lifeguard certificates have been issued. During the last year 535 people were saved from drowning in more than 5.000 guarded areas in Germany including the coasts of the Baltic and North Seas. Given that worldwide app. 500,000 people drown per year the German Lifesaving Society is strongly engaged to increase international safety standards through an active collaboration in the international umbrella organisation, the International Life Saving Federation (ILS) and the International Life Saving Federation – Europe (ILS-E).

Item Type
Conference (Talk)
Publication Status
Event Details
YOUMARES 2.0, 07 Sep 2011 - 09 Sep 2011, Bremerhaven, Germany.
Eprint ID
Cite as
Laudien, J. and Einsporn, M. (2011): Safe marine fieldwork – higher risks in remote areas require advanced rescue training , YOUMARES 2.0, Bremerhaven, Germany, 7 September 2011 - 9 September 2011 .

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