Holland America Receives Rescue at Sea Award

The captain and crew of Holland America Line’s ms Veendam were hono
ured recently by the Association for Rescue at Sea with a AFRAS AMVER Award for the 2015 rescue of a pilot who ditched his aircraft in the Pacific Ocean near Hawaii. The Automated Mutual Assistance Vessel Rescue System was implemented by the U.S. Coast Guard in 1958, and the AMVER Awards were created in 1971 to recognize vessels that participate in the program.

Veendam’s Captain Eric van der Wal accepted the honour on behalf of the cruise line at a Washington D.C. ceremony 21SEP.

“The pilot rescue in the Pacific Ocean is a proud moment in our company history, and we are honoured to receive the AFRAS AMVER Award from the Association for Rescue at Sea,” said Orlando Ashford, Holland America Line’s President. “We are proud to support the AMVER motto, ‘No Call for Help Goes Unanswered,’ and on behalf of Veendam’s captain and crew we thank you for the recognition.”

The AMVER awards honor the heroism of those who take extraordinary measures to effect a successful rescue at sea. On 25JAN15, Veendam rescued a pilot 225 miles off the coast of Maui, who had to ditch his single-engine aircraft after a malfunction with the fuel system. The plane had a parachute system, and the pilot was able to safely escape into a life raft from which he was retrieved by Veendam.

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