With the keel for the marine ambulances laid at the Cochin Shipyard, the state hopes to get its first sea ambulances ready by early 2020. Fisheries Minister J Mercykutty Amma, who was present at the ceremony, said that it was appreciable that the Cochin Shipyard, which had been till now building ships for the defence and large commercial sectors, had now come up in support of local and domestic segments.
Earlier the government had declared that the marine ambulances would be launched in November this year. However, it was delayed because of some issues raised with keel laying and engine specifications. Now with the formal launch of the construction, the officials said that the marine ambulances would be launched by earlier 2020.
Kadapuram.com had earlier reported that about the delay in the launch of the marine ambulances.
Envisaged for rescue and treatment of fishermen when in distress, the marine ambulances would be stationed in three regions- Southern, Central and Northern. The agreement for constructing the three marine ambulances was signed between the Fisheries Directorate and Cochin Shipyard in 2018.
The cost of one marine is estimated at Rs six crore. The marine ambulance can hold two patients and seven crew members. The marine ambulance will have all the facilities such as examination room, nursing room, beds, mortuary freezer, refrigerators and medical lockers.