(www.MaritimeCyprus.com) A Ukrainian seafarer was hospitalized in Casablanca, Morocco. The Marine Insurer requested GVA to assist with finding a way to repatriate the seafarer back to Odessa, Ukraine. Apart from the main challenge being Moroccan Airspace closure as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak, there were some additional issues to be solved.
The Moroccan police force refused to return the seafarer’s passport without a written confirmation from GVA that we were responsible for the repatriation of the seafarer and provided the flight details and transportation arrangements. As Moroccan Airspace is currently closed, obtaining landing permissions in Casablanca was achieved with the great efforts and support of the Ukrainian Consulate in Morocco which also helped with the approval by the Moroccan Ministry of foreign affairs.
Only after obtaining the above would the civil aviation authority give their permission for the Air Ambulance to land in Morocco.
The seafarer was escorted by the Moroccan Police to the airport and only after all the immigration formalities had been completed, was the seafarer allowed to get his passport back and board the Air Ambulance.
In order to secure the smooth and successful performance of this mission, all the relevant local authorities were fully briefed of the upcoming medical repatriation in advance. By having this multiagency collaboration supporting this unusual case the seafarer was successfully transported back home to Odessa and met by his family at the airport.
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For similar extraordinary medical evacuation case, click HERE