USCG with coordination areas-rescue coordination centers (RCC) -- for conducting the physical search.
(1) USAF. The USAF operates the RCC for inland areas under the jurisdiction of the United
(2) USCG. The USCG operates the RCC for water areas under the jurisdiction of the United
States to include the high seas and territories and possessions under US jurisdiction (except the Panama
Canal Zone and inland areas of Alaska).
OVERDUE, UNREPORTED, AND EMERGENCY STATUS AIRCRAFT
a. Coordination. According to FAA ATC procedures, air traffic controllers must coordinate efforts
to assist any aircraft believed lost, overdue, or in emergency status. After receiving information about
an aircraft in distress, they forward detailed data to the RCC in whose area the emergency exists. When
an aircraft is considered overdue or in emergency status, these controllers alert the RCC and forward, as
available, the information in Figure 1-6. The air traffic controllers also provide maximum assistance to
aircraft in distress. When requested by the pilot or deemed necessary, they enlist the services of
available radar facilities and direction-finding facilities operated by the FAA, military, and Federal
Communications Commission, as well as their emergency services and facilities.
b. Aircraft Overdue on a VFR Flight Plan. The destination station is considered the FSS whose
flight plan area includes the airport of intended landing. This FSS initiates SAR procedures for overdue
or unreported aircraft on VFR flight plans. An aircraft on a VFR flight plan is considered overdue when
an arrival report has not been received by the destination station within 30 minutes of its ETA (15
minutes for jet aircraft). As soon as the aircraft becomes overdue or is unreported, the destination
station shall attempt to locate it by checking all adjacent airports that can be reached by government
circuits or local telephone. If this communications search does not locate it by checking all adjacent
airports that can be reached by government circuits or local telephone. If this communications search
does not locate the aircraft, the destination station transmits an INREQ to the departure station (QALQ).
On receipt of the QALQ, the departure station checks locally for any information about the aircraft and
transmits a message to the destination station giving any flight plan information not previously sent, to
include additional pertinent information.
(1) Information request. If replies to the QALQ have been negative or the aircraft has not been
located within one hour after ETA (30 minutes for jet aircraft), the destination station shall transmit a
numbered INREQ to the departure station, destination RCC tie-in station, and all stations along the