The coast guard keeps an eye on the sea

Coast guard


  • 02.10.17

    An almost intact German submarine dating from WWI was discovered in Belgian waters. Earlier this year underwater scans had identified an object which bore the hallmarks of a submarine. After further investigation this was confirmed, it is a UB-II type submarine. The wreck lies at a depth of 30 meters and it is suspected that the bodies of the 23-strong crew are still on board. Governor Carl Decaluwé, the official receiver of archeologic findings in Belgian waters, has asked secretary of state for the North Sea Philippe De Backer to protect this unique finding. As long as the investigation is ongoing, the location of the wreck will not be revealed. To enable further and precise identification, the number on the propeller will be searched for.  Eleven sunken U-boats have been found so far in Belgian waters, but none has been preserved as good as this latest one.

    More on underwater heritage: and reporting findings at sea


  • 12.09.17
    Marine Forecasts©Science Policy Office

    Do you want to know exactly what you will be up against at sea? 
    Our coast guard partner Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences (RBINS)/ Operational Directorate Natural Environment has the perfect solution:
    Twice a day, 5-day forecasts are issued of the marine conditions in the North Sea and in the Belgian Coastal Waters. You can consult wind speed and wave height, but also sea salinity, wave peak period, sea surface elevation and many more.
    It is the intention to further develop functionalities according to the wishes and needs of the users. Your suggestions are greatly appreciated and can be sent to

    A version for mobile devices is available at

  • 31.08.17
    Navy©Belgian Navy

    Interested in a job with the navy?
    September 6th (and every other first Wednesday of the month at 2pm) you can get to know more about a certain vacancy or about life and work with the navy in general in the Specialised Information Centre in Zeebrugge naval base.  

    More information on the website of our coast guard partner ministry of Defence:

  • 30.08.17

    If you go diving at sea, you are obliged to report this to the Maritime Rescue and Coördination Centre (MRCC) Ostend. The correct procedure can be found in Notices to Mariners nr 1.

    If you go diving on wrecks, you should take into account that in Belgian waters 8 ship wrecks are recognized as cultural heritage. 
    They are: 
    - HMS Wakeful
    - West-Hinder
    - Wooden shipwreck Ostend
    - Wrecksite Buiten Ratel Sandbank
    - t Vliegend Hart
    - U-11
    - SS Kilmore
    - HMS Briljant

    If you decide to go diving on one of these wrecks, you are not only required to report this to MRCC Ostend, but also to the Federal Public Service (FPS) Mobility and Transport. This should be done at least four hours beforehand. You can find an online form on the website of FPS Mobility and Transport. 

  • 28.08.17

    The secretaries Coast Guard had a meeting with Secretary of State for the North Sea Philippe De Backer, the governor of West-Flanders province and their advisors on August 25th 2017. True to tradition, a number of current topics were discussed, such as watersports at sea, the coast guard centre, watersports at sea, drones, Marine Spatial Planning, ...

  • 21.08.17
    NH90©Belgian Navy

    Crazy about helicopters, fascinated by the air force and a keen runner?
    Keep your diary clear for the open door of our coast guard partner ministry of Defense at Coxyde Base. 
    you are welcome on Wednesday 23rd of August from 1pm to 5pm. 

    At 7pm you can take part in the Runway Run. By doing so, you do not only support several charities but you stand a chance to win a flight in a helicopter. 

    All information: Basis Koksijde and

  • 02.08.17
    Aerial Surveillance

    In 2016 our coast guard partner MUMM/ Operational Directorate Natural Environment - Royal Belgian Institute of Natural Sciences flew a total of 273 hours on missions to observe the North Sea from the air. The operators detected 33 instances of pollution caused by vessels at sea: 13 operational discharges and 20 accidental discharges. They also investigated sulphur emissions at sea: 120 vessels were suspected of emitting high levels of sulphur from their exhausts.


  • 26.07.17
    Border control pleasure craft

    Due to a EU directive, from now on the Maritime and River Police will closely monitor the pleasure craft to and from third countries (=non-Schengen destinations). 

    This means that the crew of yachts departing from a Belgian harbour to a non-Schengen country (Great-Britain) are to report to the border crossing point of the Maritime and River Police in the port of origin. Pleasure craft coming from a non-Schengen country, have to call at a port that is a designated border crossing point and report to the Maritime and River Police based in said port.

    In both instances, you need to hand over a document containing all technical characteristics of the vessel and the names of all persons aboard. A template for this document can be found in the Notices to Mariners nr 1(Annex 2) and can also be found on the nautibel website

    All marinas along the Belgian coast are recognized Schengen border crossing points.

    More information in Notices to Mariners nr 1 and 

  • 26.07.17
    Surveillance airplane MUMM

    After ten years of loyal service, the surveillance airplane of the MUMM (Operational Directorate Natural Environment, Science Policy Office) deserved a new coat of paint!

    Over the years, the airplane's taksks diversified: from almost exclusively monitoring vessel discharges, to a broad array of operations, focussing on 'maritime surveillance' in cooperation with other coast guard partners. To mark and to highlight this evolution, the surveillance airplane will from now on be recognizable as an official Coast Guard platform with matching logo and the typical colors and striping. For more information on the Belgian programme for surveillance of the North Sea, see

  • 25.07.17
    TTX exercises drowning persons

    On 16, 23 and 24 March 2017, three table top exercises were held to test the procedure for saving drowning persons, all under the supervision of West-Flanders governor Carl Decaluwé. This year the coastal municipalities of Westende, Nieuwpoort and Zeebrugge took part.

    These are exercises without a real deployment of any emergency services/means. A crisis situation is simulated based on a realistic scenario and the participants work out on paper how they would operate on site and in real time. Numerous (coast guard) partners participated as well as the coast guard secretaries who acted as observors.