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Old 23 December 2006, 15:12   #11
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Over hear, Coasties and Police boats use blue strobes when they're on calls.

Oddly, so do snowplows!
Damn; must be cold up there if you have to plow the channel...

Yellow flashing lights are used by subs on the surface, as I recall. something like 3 short, pause, 3 short.

If you are looking for a distress marker light, why not simply go with a white strobe? It is, as I recall, a somewhat standard (if rarely used) distress signal anyway; will be readily identifiable (even in a crowd), and will not be confused with the odd boomer or hovercraft.

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Old 24 December 2006, 05:23   #12
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If you are looking for a distress marker light, why not simply go with a white strobe? It is, as I recall, a somewhat standard (if rarely used) distress signal anyway; will be readily identifiable (even in a crowd), and will not be confused with the odd boomer or hovercraft.

jky
White strobe could easily be confused with a cardinal mark.

Why not simply stick with the SOLAS distress signals - trust me, in daytime bright sunlight from a large helo you won't see much of an orange light anyway. They're designed to be visible in the horizontal plane, not viewed from above.

Handheld orange smoke (daytime) is better for helo crews anyway - gives an instand view of wind sheer and direction around the casualty.
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Old 24 December 2006, 06:18   #13
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I agree completely with the SOLAS markers.

But the discussion seemed to be about what lights would not be confused with others, so I threw out the strobe, if one had to have some sort of light to feel better. Not talking about a flashing incandescent light, but an actual Xenon strobe, which would not be likely to be confused with a normal marker (though I also do not know what a cardinal mark looks like at night.)


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Old 24 December 2006, 08:38   #14
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Fair point about the strobe, but there is another problem with using strobes as a distress marker.

Depending on the kit used by the responding SAR asset, night vision goggles and some helo mounted night vision kit can give great problems with strobe lights - the intensity of the light pulse is decidedly NOT good for the user's eyes!

Night-time, handheld flares are always best....although we have been shot at more than once be people who do not know the difference between handheld and parachute.....
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Old 26 December 2006, 13:27   #15
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although we have been shot at more than once be people who do not know the difference between handheld and parachute.....
LOL.

The picture this brings to mind is hilarious (though it probably wasn't at the time.)

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Old 26 December 2006, 15:35   #16
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I've had a yellow strob fitted to my RIB for many years. The Port of London Authority insists that safety boats are fitted with them so that they are clearly identified and rowing boats don't plough into the back of us whilst we are rescuing somebody.

It is becoming more and more common place nowadays and they come in very handy when recovering on busy roads in Central London!!

I'd say go for it if you need it for recovering on busy roads and the like.

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Old 26 December 2006, 15:52   #17
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Cheers Chris,

As you say they can be a good safety aid. And anything that improves safety has got to be worth it.

I have one lined up just waiting to sort it now.
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Old 26 December 2006, 16:09   #18
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If anyone still needs one try - JC @ Rotaflash Ltd The Compass Off The High Street Northop Flintshire CH7 6BQ 01352 840786 01352 840798 j_carlin@btconnect.com

Mention my name and he will sort you a good deal out.

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Old 26 December 2006, 16:49   #19
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Cheers Jono will bear that in mind.
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Old 26 December 2006, 18:38   #20
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Fair point about the strobe, but there is another problem with using strobes as a distress marker.

Depending on the kit used by the responding SAR asset, night vision goggles and some helo mounted night vision kit can give great problems with strobe lights - the intensity of the light pulse is decidedly NOT good for the user's eyes!

Night-time, handheld flares are always best....although we have been shot at more than once be people who do not know the difference between handheld and parachute.....
I have an IR strobe - wonder if that would help or just get me arrested???
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