From 12 to 17 June 2023, the patrol boat Fulmar, based in Saint Pierre and Miquelon, and a Falcon 50M maritime patrol aircraft from Lann-Bihoue took part in Exercise ARGUS 23 along the coast of Greenland, near Nuuk, the capital.

This training, organized by the Joint Arctic Command (JACO) of Nuuk, the USCG Atlantic Area and CECLANT, has strengthened interoperability with our partners, improved our procedures and our knowledge of this isolated and hostile space where the water temperature does not exceed 5 degrees and where winds can be violent.

For 5 days, they multiplied search and rescue exercises (Search and Rescue-SAR) but also assistance and fight against pollution with the Danish HDMS Knud Rasmussen, the American USCGC Sycamore as well as an EC225 helicopter and Greenlandic police boats. With capricious weather delaying the start of the exercise, the units began revising their ranges during a day of individual training on June 13. The ramp-up continued on the 14th with the realization of mutual training, towing and assistance to a stricken vessel. The highlight of the week was a major SAR exercise on the 15th in the Nuuk fjords. In the scenario, units were mobilized to search for 10 missing persons after their boat overturned. After more than 8 hours of exercise, during which the Fulmar was able to exercise the direction of on-scene operations (On-Scene Commander) in connection with the JACO, the units relocated the castaways and then administered first aid before transferring them to shore. This sequence thus made it possible to test the good coordination of the actors from the escalation of the alert to the medical care.

The week finally ended on Friday 16 with a SAR demonstration for the benefit of the Danish, Greenlandic and American authorities present in Nuuk. The F50M also took advantage of the week to evaluate several possibilities of diversion terrain between Qaqatok in the south of the island and Pituffik (formerly Thule) in the far north, the opportunity to discover this northern base of the US Space Force (more than 72 ° N).

Every year, JACO, which is also JRCC (Joint Rescue Coordination Center) for Greenland, coordinates a hundred SAR operations. During this deployment, the F50M participated in particular in one of them, on June 11, in connection with Danish and Greenlandic units which unfortunately did not save the two missing fishermen.

By Editor