Chronology of the rescue operations

25 May 1928 – The Italia crashes on the ice. Radio operator Biagi salvages radio, constructs a radio mast and begins transmitting SOS.

31 May – Survivors unable to establish radio contact because of weather conditions and negligence by base ship Città di Milano, who fail to maintain radio watch and instead continue to send routine traffic. Malmgren, with Commanders Mariano and Zappi, begin a trek toward land.

3 June – A Soviet amateur radio operator Nikolai Schmidt in Vokhma village hears the Italia SOS signals.

5 June – A Norwegian pilot makes the first flight in search of the Italia. In the ensuing weeks, pilots from Norway, Sweden, Finland, Russia and Italy make search and rescue flights.

8 June – Radio contact established between the ice floe and the Città di Milano. Search operations continue.

June 15/16 – Malmgren collapses from exposure on the ice and asks to be left behind. His body is never found.

18 June – Roald Amundsen and five others disappear on a flight to Spitsbergen to aid in rescue operations. Captain Sora of the Italian Alpine troops defies orders and sets off by sled with Arctic explorers Ludvig Varming and Sjef van Dongen to try to reach the crash zone.

20 June – Italian pilot Maddalena spots the survivors and drops supplies, many of which are smashed or useless.

22 June – Italian and Swedish pilots drop more supplies, this time successfully.

23 June – Swedish pilot Lundborg forcibly removes Nobile from the ice floe but crashes his plane on the return for more survivors and is trapped with the others. Rescue operations suspended pending arrival of suitable light aircraft capable of landing on the ice.

6 July Lundborg is picked up from the ice floe by his Swedish co-pilot Birger Schyberg in a light Cirrus Moth ski-biplane. Schyberg intends to rescue the other five persons as well, but changing ice conditions lead him to change his mind after having brought Lundborg to safety.

12 July – The Soviet icebreaker Krasin rescues Mariano and Zappi, who were located from Krasin’s large aircraft the previous day. The five remaining Italia survivors are rescued by the ice-breaker later the same day. Soviet pilot Boris Chukhnovsky and his four crew also rescued by the Krasin on its way back to Kings Bay. It had made an unsuccessful safety landing after seeing Zappi and Mariano.
14 July – Rescuers Sora and Van Dongen rescued from Foyn Island by Finnish and Swedish aircraft.