What are Rescue boats on Ship?

What are Rescue boats in Ship?

Rescue boats are small boats carried on board ships for use in emergencies such as in rescue operations of survivors. They are designed to be launched quickly into the water, and they come in motorized versions. Lifeboats may be rigid, inflatable or rigid-inflatable combination-hulled vessels.

rescue boat

Why are rescue boats necessary in ships?

Rescue boats are necessary in ships for several reasons.

Firstly, they serve as a means of rescue in case of emergencies such as shipwrecks or collisions. The rescue boats can be quickly launched into the water to save the crew members and passengers who are in distress.

Secondly, rescue boats are essential for carrying out rescue operations during man-overboard situations. If a crew member or passenger falls overboard, the rescue boat can be quickly launched to retrieve them from the water.

boat in ships

Thirdly, rescue boats are also important for carrying out rescue operation of other survivors in water and also to attend a vessel in distress.

How is rescue boat operated and maintained?

Rescue boat is needed to be operated and maintained carefully.

ship emergency boat

A mercury engine is fitted on a rescue boat which is a crank engine. A special arrangement is required to operate the boat in ship, water is kept at a drum right below the engine so that the propeller is submerged under water in the drum. Engine is not started without the water because the propeller requires lubrication and the water acts as a lubricant. In case we run the engine dry this propeller bush will get damaged and then we need to change the part and sometimes even the fresh water pump which is used for cooling the engine also gets damaged. The engine is also fitted with a cooling water pump which is made of Teflon, water comes out after getting circulated and cools the engine. Every week we need to start and try out the engine on board.

mercury engine

There’s a portable fire extinguisher, two batteries, a fuel tank and along with that we have oars (paddle) in the rescue boat, in case if the engine is not working we can use and oars to manoeuvre the ship. One important safety precaution to follow is that during maintenance of the rescue boat we should always wear a safety harness so that you may not fall off board ship while working.

rescue boat rounds

We need to hand crank the engine but sometimes this engine faces difficulty while hand cranking when we are in cold climates so we use a cold start spray and spray it in the carburettor, this warms the incoming air inside so we do not need much of a cranking and the engine can start automatically.

What are the equipment fitted in a rescue boat?

Rescue boats on merchant ships are equipped with a range of essential safety equipment to ensure that they are ready for emergency situations. These include:

  1. Life jackets: Life jackets are an essential piece of safety equipment on any rescue boat. They provide buoyancy to keep individuals afloat in the water, even if they are unconscious.
  2. First aid kit: A well-stocked first aid kit is essential in case of injuries or medical emergencies. The kit typically includes bandages, antiseptics, painkillers, and other medical supplies.
  3. Emergency supplies: Emergency supplies can include food, water, and blankets, which can help to keep individuals warm and nourished while they wait for rescue.
  4. Navigation equipment: Navigation equipment such as compasses, GPS systems, and charts can help the rescue boat crew to navigate through adverse weather conditions and locate stranded individuals.
  5. Communication equipment: Communication equipment such as radios or satellite phones can help the rescue boat crew to communicate with other vessels or the shore, and alert rescue services.
  6. Flares: Flares are used to signal for help in emergency situations. They can be seen from far away and help rescue services locate the rescue boat.
  7. Searchlights: Searchlights can be used to help locate individuals in the water or identify hazards in low light conditions. Fire extinguishers:
  8. Fire extinguishers are essential in case of onboard fires. They can help to extinguish small fires before they spread and become a bigger danger.
  9. Rescue gear: Rescue gear such as ropes, hooks, and nets can help the crew to rescue individuals from the water.


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