NATO ships and aircraft assist search for a person overboard from Italian cruise ship
Oct 11, 2019
GULF OF CADIZ — Standing NATO Maritime Forces assisted search and rescue for a person reported missing from an Italian cruise ship sailing off the coast of Spain.
After a full day of search, body of the missing person was retrieved around 9am on Friday, 11 October, in Gulf of Cadiz area by the Spanish authorities.
NATO naval forces received a ‘man overboard’ mayday call at 22:26 pm on Thursday. Originally participating in NATO exercise Dynamic Mariner/ Flotex-19 in the area, NATO ships re-routed to assist search and rescue operations.
NATO units included the U.S. Navy guided-missile destroyer USS Gridley, the Royal Norwegian Navy frigate HNoMS Thor Heyerdahl, the Belgian Navy frigate Leopold I, and the Royal Netherlands Navy frigate HNLMS Van Speijk. Additional units assisting in the search were the Spanish search and rescue tug Maria Zambrano, a French Maritime Patrol Aircraft, and a Spanish Search and Rescue helicopter.
NATO Maritime Command is currently conducting exercise Dynamic Mariner/Flotex-19 (DYMR/FL19) with Spain (SPMARFOR), who will be taking over the command of NATO Response Force maritime component in 2020. DYMR/FL19 involves ships, submarines, aircraft and personnel from 18 NATO nations operating off the coast of Spain.