30 March 2009 NCI Worms Head have achieved Declared Facility Status (DFS). To achieve DFS, a station is subject to an all day assessment which includes a number of exercises designed to prove that it can demonstrate its competency in carrying out the core tasks of “Spotting, Plotting and Reporting” and thereby ensure that the highest standards of watch keeping are maintained. It is then considered by HM Coastguard as an integral part of the Search and Rescue (SAR) organisation.
Assessment day at Worms Head saw two NCI DFS assessors waiting at the lookout to see the morning watch go through their opening routine, set up the station and report in to Swansea Coastguard. The watch consisted of one male and one female watch keeper and also present were two liaison officers from MRCC Swansea. Each watch keeper was interviewed by an assessor and this was followed by practical tests covering chart and map work. Log books, training records and the individual watch keeper’s manual were also checked correct.
During the course of the watch, there was a simulated exercise based on preventing a stranded male from attempting to cross the flooded crossing to Worms Head Island and his eventual rescue by Horton Inshore Lifeboat. As the day drew to a close, the DFS assessors conferred with the Coastguard Liaison Officers as to their opinion on the Worms Head operation and received a very positive response.
By the end of September 2009, some 75% of NCI stations are expected to have become listed assets in the SAR network.
For further information see the main NCI Site