AMVER is the Automated Mutual Assistance Vessel Rescue (since 1958) international system, sponsored by the United States Coast Guard that uses commercial ships to rescue people in distress at sea globally. This computer-based and voluntary ship reporting system is used worldwide by search and rescue authorities http://www.amver.com/.
The process to enroll a ship in the AMVER system is simple and easy and can be completed by the crew or operations department of the shipping company using the search and rescue questionnaire found on the AMVER website. Once a vessel is enrolled, the crew can immediately begin reporting following the instructions in the AMVER Ship Reporting Manual. Over 22,000 ships from hundreds of nations participate in AMVER. An average of 4,000 ships are on the AMVER plot each day and AMVER Center computer receives over 14,000 AMVER messages a day. Over 2,800 lives have been saved by AMVER-participating ships since 2000. The success of AMVER is directly related to the extraordinary cooperation of ships, companies, SAR authorities, communication service providers and governments in supporting this international humanitarian program to protect life and property at sea.
The U.S. Coast Guard created an annual AMVER Awards Program as a way of rewarding those ships which remain “on plot” for at least 128 days in a calendar year. These awards have become instrumental in AMVER recruitment and retention. AMVER awards are a tribute to the support of a ship’s crew, management, and ownership, which is so integral to the program’s success.