Due to the rough sea, the divers were trapped under the cliffs close to a cave and after repeated attempts were unable to return back to their initial position on land. The AFM Operations Centre immediately dispatched a Search and Rescue (SAR) Launch, Melita I and an AFM Alouette III helicopter to the area. The AFM helicopter provided assistance and winched the five divers to a safe area in the vicinity.
Medical Evacuation of sick crewmember
Later on during the day, at around 2.10 pm , the AFM Operations Centre received a call stating that a crew member onboard the MV Toledo was experiencing severe chest pains and requested assistance. After professional medical consultation it was determined by the master that the crew member required urgent medical treatment at the nearest hospital. The master redirected the course of the vessel towards Malta after being around 38nautical miles NW from Gozo. An AFM Alouette III helicopter that was earlier in the day busy assisting the five divers in Lapsi, was scrambled once again to a rendezvous point in order to winch the sick crewmember aboard the helicopter and transfer him to Malta. Facing strong headwinds, the AFM helicopter battled the elements and carried out the operation successfully as it landed at AFM Air Wing Base where an awaiting ambulance transferred the patient to Mater Dei Hospital for further medical treatment.
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