Originally Posted by lakelandterrier
...Orange smoke will give any assisting craft - sea / air visual indication of where exactly you are, wind speed direction etc..... that electronic means will not,
There are plenty of electronic devices that will give you this information, they will even do it in the dark and in restricted vis, something the old orange flare you mention is no so effective with. These devices do not put the users at risk, they are not a burden to the tax payer when they expire after 3 yrs and they last a lot longer than the 60 secs to 3 mins you get out of the orange flare.
I think when the CEO of the MCA is publically asking the question "Do we still need to carry flares?" We should all be asking the same question.
I belive it will be some time before we see the flare properly replaced but let's be honest the technology is there to provide something much better, safer and more effective, it just needs to be embraced.