The coast guard keeps an eye on the sea

Coast guard


  • 18.10.16
    Plenary Meeting European Coast Guard Functions Forum 2016

    From 20 tot 22 September the secretary of the coast guard took part in the plenary meeting of the European Coast Guard Functions Forum in London. This forum, founded in 2009, has as its main goal to make coast guard related activities more coherent within the different member states and to promote mutual cooperation. 

    This year, the focus was primarily on the cooperation between the different agencies within the European Union, such as the recently inaugurated European Border and Coast Guard Agency (Frontex). The chairmanship rotates between the participating countries, Belgium will host the forum in 2022. 

    More information on

  • 18.10.16
    MIRG exercise 11 October 2016

    October 12th, a large-scale international exercise took place on the North Sea in which various coast guard partners as well as the coast guard secretariat took part. As much as 500 persons worked together to pull this exercise off. The scenario involved a fire outbreak on board a ferry carrying more than 200 passengers.

    The perfect opportunity for several Maritime Incident Response Groups (MIRG) to put their training into practice. A MIRG team is made up of firefighters who are specifically trained to intervene quickly in the event of a distress situation on a ship in the high seas. Their main task is to avoid mass-evacuations. Belgium, the Netherlands, the UK and France all have MIRG teams, and they all participated to the exercise.

    Thanks to the shipping police for the photos.

  • 11.10.16

    The application for a certificate of registration for pleasure craft or the renewal thereof can now be handled completely online. An e-service was created for this purpose and the status of the application can be followed online. This way, you no longer have to stand in line and the application can be handled more efficiently. 

    You can find the e-service on the website of our coast guard partner Federal Public Service (FPS) Mobility and Transport: 

  • 10.10.16
    NH90®Jorn Urbain

    Have you always dreamt of being a pilot with the ministry of Defence? October 12th an information session on the differrent aspects of the formation and profession of a pilot takes place in the air base in Beauvechain. 

    Are you interested in another function with the Air component of our coast guard partner the ministry of Defence? Another information session is planned, one week later on Wednesday 19 October, also in Beauvechain. 

    All information on

  • 30.09.16

    Looking for a job and interested in wind and water? Sunday October 2nd there is a job fair in Ostend which focuses on vacancies of firms active in the on - and offshore wind industry and maritime industry. 

    From 10am to 3pm- Greenbridge, Wetenschapspark 1, Oostende

    All information on 

  • 16.09.16

    August 31st, the Zeetijger of our coast guard partner Fleet received an urgent distress call to assist with an oil-combating operation in a windmill park. The exercise was coordinated by our coast guard partner Federal Public Service (FPS) Public Health. This was a perfect opportunity to test their new anti-oilpollution equipment on board the Zeetijger. Our coast guard partner Defence also participated to the exercise with the patrol vessel Pollux and the coast guard partners Civil Protection and Public Planning Service (PPS) Science Policy Office - Management Unit of the North Sea Mathmematical Models (MUMM) also offered their support. 


  • 16.09.16

    Annually, the Flanders Marine Institute (VLIZ) awards the North Sea Award to a researcher or a research group to encourage their innovative fundamental or applied research dedicated to the studying the structure or functioning of our world's oceans. Applications are welcome until 30 November 2016.

    More information:

  • 13.09.16

    The past edition of the Safe Shipping Days showed that 35 of 197 inspected pleasure craft were not in order. The Safe Shipping Days, an initiative of West-Flanders governor Carl Decaluwé, are a well-established tradition by now: this was already the fourth time that our coast guard partners Waterway and River Police and Federal Public Service (FPS) Mobility worked together to carry out intensified inspections in Zeebrugge, Nieuwpoort, Oostende and Blankenberge during a ten-day period. The infractions concerned mainly the lack of the necessary registration documents. None of the infractions had an impact on the seaworthiness and no alcohol infraction was establised. 

  • 13.09.16

    Secretary of state for the North Sea Philippe De Backer is working on a plan to reduce plastic waste in the North Sea. No less than 20.000 tonnes of waste is dumped in the North Sea annually. 

    The secretary of state wants to work together with all North Sea users to develop 'blue deals' so as to reduce the mountain of plastic waste. He also plans sensitization actions and the restart of the project Fishing for Litter. Fishermen receive big bags to fill with plastic waste that they dredge up out of sea and bring to shore.

  • 13.09.16

    This summer 1703 lost children at the beach were safely returned to their parents or supervisors, thanks to the lifeguards and a number of our coast guard partners that offer assistance therein (MRCC, ministry of Defence,..). In July, 714 children were lost and in August 989 children. 

    The free wristbands distributed by IKWV ((Intercommunal for Coastal Lifeguard Services in West-Flanders) ensured that most children were quickly reunited with their parents/supervisors. You can get the free wristbands at tourism offices, first aid posts or newspaper shops along the coast.