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Old 14 May 2015, 10:19   #51
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Yes. That's exactly the point.

It's all very good saying that the coast guard would be able to "look at the lat/long and describe the position to non-DSC vessels"... What Poly quite rightly pointed out there was that they don't necessarily know if there are any vessels around to describe it to.

CG can look at lat long right?
CG can then say to over the VHF assistance needed near xxx having look at at the lat lon on the chart...... OR more likely get the lifeboat or designated resource to go to the lat long.

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If a non-DSC vessel hears a voice call giving position they can immediately offer assistance or not depending on where they are.
And how does the non boaty person describe where they are?
3 point fix? too technical
Visual? "I can see the spinnaker tower" you can see that from 80% of the Solent?
What happens if weather is poor and they cant see squat?

I am not saying don't use the std practices, hence i posted a link to the script in my first post.
However, a good friend of mine used the voice method at night and it took over an hour for the RNLI to find him, luckily he was fine. So using the button first then voice (using the script i posted) with PLB/flares/signal mirror/flags or anything else is fine.
But don't think that a non trained person will be able to give an accurate location over the radio when panicked in a dangerous unfamiliar situation every time.
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Old 14 May 2015, 11:19   #52
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I'm not suggesting that an untrained person will somehow be able to give an accurate location.

Poly made the point that the CG don't know who else is there... You started going on about "How the hell is the GPS going to be wrong!?"...
Believing that you'd somehow missed the point, I simply reiterated what Poly had said.
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Old 14 May 2015, 12:04   #53
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Guys guys there are so many split hairs all over this and all good well argued points. But surely the basic point is to get who ever is on the boat to pic up the mic and start talking. Basic rules apply that someone will come back at them and start the processes. I just think we could be for ever!!


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Old 14 May 2015, 12:45   #54
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not going to sit and argue all the points Poly...

...How the hell is the gps coordinates going to be wrong, ...

...If you want me to argue every point you made let me know, and ill make the effort. but atm i cant be arsed to split the hairs any further, i've given a script,...
I suggest you calm down and make your points in a civil and polite fashion or not at all. It will be less embarrassing to have simply misunderstood what I wrote than berated me and those who point out what I said.

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CG can look at lat long right?
CG can then say to over the VHF assistance needed near xxx having look at at the lat lon on the chart...... OR more likely get the lifeboat or designated resource to go to the lat long.
Precisely the problem. I'm 1 mile away from you - no idea that you've had a heart attack and your missus is in a panic trying to work out what to do, and how to restart the engine. She's pressed the red button. The CG don't know whats wrong do launch the lifeboat. It takes them 8 minutes to muster and launch and another 15 to arrive (if you are lucky). I'm two minutes away. The CG have no idea that I am in the area. If I don't have DSC I have no idea of your distress. Best practice is to place a voice call immediately after the red button - that is all people were trying to get across, and to help YOU understand WHY that is best practice.

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And how does the non boaty person describe where they are?
3 point fix? too technical
Visual? "I can see the spinnaker tower" you can see that from 80% of the Solent?
What happens if weather is poor and they cant see squat?

But don't think that a non trained person will be able to give an accurate location over the radio when panicked in a dangerous unfamiliar situation every time.
A precise location is not essential but an accurate one is useful. Is it really so difficult to imagine someone saying "I'm in Loch Etive" [now that is a massive search area, but very few boats to look at - and because its so quiet ANY boat in Loch Etive who hears that will come looking even if they are 15 miles away!] or "We left Bembridge Harbour 5 minutes ago" or "we are in a yellow RIB on the west side of Bute". None of those locations actually refer to what you can see so would all work in poor vis. Or of course what might be really helpful to know - "I can see a blue rib nearby".
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Old 14 May 2015, 13:06   #55
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How far do we want to go with this, how many times do we want to split the hairs. I gave a link, gave a method of finding more info to the OP, he now has that and many more opinions, can we just drop the nit picking, it's so petty, or do you we want to go to playground rules?
Sheesh! whatever already...
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Old 14 May 2015, 14:39   #56
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DSC sets are designed to transmit the LAST KNOWN position - that can be IIRC up to an hour old?
Its far longer. They will give the last valid pos from within 23.5hours. The pos does have a time attached so CG knows it was 4 hours ago. If you filed a passage plan they can criss reference etc.

There will be plenty of people on here who have GPS coming from a plotter etc that needs to be switched on. Not unknown for people operating locally to their base not to put plotter on. IIRC sets only alert after 4 hours if there is no GPS signal. Before that the pos will say something like OLD on screen if its more than 10mins ago.
10mins on a RIB doing just 18knots puts them 3nm away from you...

For those with inbuilt GPS in their radio this will be less of a concern. For those without inbuilt its another point of failure. If you are 100% reliant on the DSC pos data it would mean you need 100% reliable GPS.

For those with GPS switch off a first fix takes time.

Crazily this whole discussion seems to have been everyone saying the same thing without saying it all. Red Button then Voice. Some may think the Red or the Voice will bring them better success. But I think everyone is actually saying they think both will be synergistic and so that's the procedure for the sign.
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Old 15 May 2015, 01:41   #57
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If you filed a passage plan they can criss reference etc.
In truth, how many of us actually file a passage plan? It's very rare that I do in the UK & never in France. I don't think I've ever heard anyone even ask for a radio check in France, the VHF traffic is very quiet over there. The only voices you hear are English chatter discussing which marina they're calling in. In the UK I will call up the CG if we are out diving (rare these days) or if we are on a passage from A-B. If we are just going out for a fishing jolly I don't bother, mainly because I've no idea where we are going & bad info is worse than no info imho.
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Old 15 May 2015, 03:43   #58
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So........................after 6 pages here is what I reckon I should:

Print out the helpful idiots guide from RYA
Stick it near the Radio
Brief my idiot passengers
Use the Red Button
Call the Coast Guard

My Radio is connected to my GPS, so its position is up to date.

Next time I'm in Corsica I shall ask the locals what happens if anyone presses the red button, or if anyone files a passage plan.

Cheers for all the info and suggestions
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Old 15 May 2015, 03:45   #59
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In truth, how many of us actually file a passage plan? It's very rare that I do in the UK & never in France.
Our local CG (Malin Head) are very proactive with passage plans and happy to do radio checks. I frequently do a radio check with them - can't hurt and TBH, an extra logged call looks good in their annual figures. Passage plans are more difficult. If I am making an A to B passage along a known route, yes I will, often cancelling the TR by phone having landed and forgotten...

But increasingly, I find that my plans are so vague and the areas so large that it's nigh on impossible to give a Coastie a handle on my plans. In this case I tend to appoint a "shore marshal" who I check in and out with, giving a general area of operations for the day. I'm fairly heavily tooled up in the comms department so if I'm in bother and conscious, I'll get a message out if I have to.
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Old 15 May 2015, 03:45   #60
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Good summary Trimix!
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