If an aircraft over water requests weather, sea conditions, ditching information, and/or assistance from surface
vessels, or if the controller feels that this information may be necessary for aircraft safety, it should be
requested from the RCC. Also, an appropriate AMVER SURPIC should be asked for if requested by the aircraft or
deemed beneficial by control personnel.
NOTE: The AMVER Center can deliver, in a matter of minutes, a SURPIC of vessels in the area of a SAR incident,
including their predicted positions and their characteristics.
In all cases of aircraft ditching, the airspace required for SAR operations must be determined by the RCC. The ACC
must block that airspace until the RCC advises the airspace is no longer required. An International Notice to Air
Missions (NOTAM) must be issued describing the airspace affected.
The following actions will be taken in the event an aircraft must make an emergency descent:
In the event an aircraft requests an emergency descent:
(a) Issue a clearance to the requested altitude if approved separation can be provided.
(b) Advise the aircraft of the traffic, and request its intentions if traffic prevents an unrestricted
ATC ADVISES (aircraft identification) UNABLE TO APPROVE UNRESTRICTED DESCENT.
TRAFFIC (traffic information).
In the event an aircraft is making or will make an emergency descent without a clearance:
(a) Advise other aircraft of the emergency descent.
ATC ADVISES (aircraft identification/all aircraft) BE ALERT FOR EMERGENCY DESCENT IN THE VICINITY OF
(latitude/longitude) FROM (altitude/FL) TO (altitude/FL).
(b) Advise other aircraft when the emergency descent is complete.
(Aircraft identification/all aircraft) EMERGENCY DESCENT AT (location) COMPLETED.
Upon notification that an aircraft is making an emergency descent through other traffic, take action
immediately to safeguard all aircraft concerned.
When appropriate, broadcast by ATC communications, by radio navigation aids, and/or through aeronautical
communication stations/services an emergency message to all aircraft in the vicinity of the descending
Include the following information:
(a) Location of emergency descent.
(b) Direction of flight.
(c) Type aircraft.
(d) Route if appropriate.
(e) Altitude vacated.
(f) Other information.
“Attention all aircraft in the vicinity of Trout, a northbound D-C Ten on A-T-S Route Alfa Seven Hundred
is making an emergency descent from flight level three three zero.” (Repeat as you deem appropriate.)
If traffic conditions permit, provide traffic information to the affected aircraft.
Immediately after an emergency broadcast or traffic information has been made, issue appropriate clearances or
instructions, as necessary, to all aircraft involved.