Spanish Navy’s offshore patrol vessel ‘Alborán’, currently engaged in the albacore surveillance and protection campaign off Cape Finisterre, assisted a Spanish fishing boat with a fisherman with a stroke on board.
Given the seriousness of the cerebrovascular accident, it was decided to medevac the fisherman by helicopter.
On Friday 3rd the OPV received a distress call from the fishing boat ‘Pachilán’ working 300 miles from the coast, requesting urgent medical assistance. The Spanish Navy patrol vessel ‘Alborán’ changed course and proceeded towards the area.
The difficult weather conditions, with heavy seas and strong west winds, prevented the salvage attempts during the night and the ‘Pachilán’ was advised to sail towards the nearest port at maximum speed. In the meantime, the OPV’s doctor and paramedic transmitted the necessary medical recommendation to stabilize the patient.
On Saturday morning, the OPV’s medical team boarded the fishing boat and, after examining the patient, decided to transfer him to the patrol boat.
A helicopter from the Maritime Rescue Service arrived and collected the patient through a VOD manoeuver (Vertical On board Delivery) from the patrol vessel’s flight deck.
This is the second assistance endeavor successfully carried out by the ‘Alborán’ within a week. The other one was the support provided to a British trawler in distress with flooded holds.
The offshore patrol vessel ‘Alborán’, with home port in Cartagena, belongs to the Maritime Action Force and has a crew of 36 people. An inspector from the Fisheries Secretariat embarked to monitor and verify the fulfillment of the fishing regulations in force.
Image: Spanish Navy