This is not simply a SAR event, like the ones from the Coast guard. This is a SAR event that have taken place after an epirb activation. Obviously that they don't count false alarms.
Paulo, I took some time to search the supporting document on the web site that contains the "stories" of all the SAR events they counted for 2010. They do in fact appear to weed out the false alarms in their final stats, but that doesn't mean there weren't SAR resources put into action for those false alarms. They just leave those out of their SAR stats. You can still find many of them in the "stories" section.
The majority of Maritime SAR Events listed in fact appear to be commercial vessels of one kind or another. It's difficult to tell, as the description is frequently "trawler" or "fishing boat" without actually stating whether commercial or private.
Quite a few were DINGHIES on the Auz coast.
Worldwide, there were 61 involving sailboats. Then, when you actually read the details, quite a few of them were cases that only required a tow - no life threatening circmstances - yet the persons on board were still counted as "Rescued." There were also a handful that were on rivers and lakes. The total persons rescued from sailboats was 157. And even that number included 22 illegal immigrants being smuggled into Greece, a dozen or so on several boats that acutally continued to port under their own power, etc.
Oh, and on the point of GPS, etc, "emoboldening" people, etc, the number of sailboats in the report making ocean crossings or long passages (more than 20 nm offshore) I counted 17.
61 sailboats, world-wide, over a whole year.