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196 : the new number to contact the CROSS


Operational Monitoring and Rescue Centers (CROSS) now have a speed-emergency number, the 196.

The CROSS thus joined the list of emergency call centers like the SAMU and CODIS. The 196 does not replace the European emergency number 112. It allows setting telephone contact with the CROSS as soon as possible without delaying sending means adapted to the emergency.

Call 196, it is the insurance to be in touch with life at sea professionals who are able to respond effectively to an emergency request.

The 196 is not a substitute of the VHF call (on channel 16), which stays the priority number to alert and keep in touch with the CROSS and emergency facilities.

If you witness a maritime incident involving people you think are in distress:

  • The 196 is to be used to directly reach a Rescue Center (CROSS), 24H / 24 - 7/7
  • The 196 number is free
  • The 196 allows the rescue center to locate you
  • With the 196, a CROSS, as emergency service, may also request telephone operators to locate a cell phone belonging to a person involved in a situation of distress at sea