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Old 15 August 2014, 11:37   #21
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Originally Posted by Pikey Dave View Post
IMVHO, when you start duplication of agencies & overlap of responsibilities the only result is confusion, tragedy & court cases. There's a lot to be said for a single point of contact.
lets be clear - there is NO overlap of responsibilities - the NCI is a charity doing what probably any of us would do if we happened to have a clifftop house with a conservatory looking over the sea - watching what goes on and calling the CG in case of concern.

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Personally I feel that the CG is not as approachable as it used to be, for routine traffic, radio checks etc.
I don't know if that is actually true or not but certainly calling Belfast from Loch Sween is an odd feeling!

Actually go back 20+ yrs and you wouldn't have made your radio checks to the CG would you? you would have used the coastal radio station - or am I remembering wrongly?
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So now we have retired traffic wardens & council jobsworths playing lookout. Purely my jaded cynical view, but hey!
I share a slight cynicism about uniformed voluntary organisations (having worked with a few!) and the type of people who get attracted to them. They are usually well meaning though.
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Old 15 August 2014, 12:10   #22
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Bitchy comments about Boris aside - So why do some think that a voluntary organsiation funded by dontations cant do good job and add value ?

Coastguard cliff rescue are I believe volunteers of and unless you happen to be very close to one RNLI station those big orange and blue floatythings are all volunteers ....................as are the independant lifeboats........

Just because people don't get paid doesn't mean they cant add value or provide a service.
Like many on here, I contribute time and money to a couple of remarkable voluntary organisations and charities, without whom our world would be immeasurably poorer, so I'm certainly not casting any opinion regarding capabilities, commitment, added value or service levels...

My opinion on this is political, not operational, so off-limits as far as this forum is concerned but I can't help wondering where it's all going to end?

I may have a misplaced sense of well-being but I probably wouldn't feel very comfortable at 30,000 feet if Air Traffic Control was funded by donations and staffed by volunteers.
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Old 15 August 2014, 12:31   #23
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lets be clear - there is NO overlap of responsibilities - the NCI is a charity doing what probably any of us would do if we happened to have a clifftop house with a conservatory looking over the sea - watching what goes on and calling the CG in case of concern.
Which is fine as long as that's as far as it goes, a bunch of old duffers with binos passing their twilight years looking out to sea, I can see the attraction meself, I might even volunteer.

I don't know if that is actually true or not but certainly calling Belfast from Loch Sween is an odd feeling!

Actually go back 20+ yrs and you wouldn't have made your radio checks to the CG would you? you would have used the coastal radio station - or am I remembering wrongly?
Nope! I've always used the coastguard.
I share a slight cynicism about uniformed voluntary organisations (having worked with a few!) and the type of people who get attracted to them. They are usually well meaning though.
Getting a dedicated channel is the thin end of the wedge, similar to 101. Give it a few years & they will be handling routine traffic & passage information as the proper CG make "efficiencies", that's when the duplication & confusion will arise. Do you call the CG or NCI or Ghostbusters Then the day will arrive when a crucial bit of information failed to get passed from one agency to the other & someone dies, (just look at the state of social services, babyP etc) not particularly important per se. but the paperwork & inquiry will cost a fortune. Then some bright spark in Whitehall will decide to amalgamate the CG with NCI, re-brand it & voila! a "new improved" National Coastguard Agency, on the cheap, half staffed by volunteers or getting minimum wage. It already happens in the Police/PCSO's, NHS, Social Services etc. No point saying it won't happen, it already does/has/is happening.

Cynical Moi?
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Old 15 August 2014, 13:48   #24
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I share a slight cynicism about uniformed voluntary organisations (having worked with a few!) and the type of people who get attracted to them. They are usually well meaning though.
I presume that a Pinny doesn't count as a uniform then?
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Old 15 August 2014, 13:50   #25
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FYI some pics from the Stepper Point NCI lookout near Padstow. Seemed very friendly chap when I was having a look around... And 10/10 for putting a dog bowl out of fresh water each day
Dog Bowl!? WTF!?..
Oh that's everything sorted then! The realm is Safe!..We can all sleep sounder in our Beds now!
Mind you Poly being a volunteer in Uniform is a REAL SURPRISE EH!
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Old 15 August 2014, 13:54   #26
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I presume that a Pinny doesn't count as a uniform then?
What you Irish Boys do in yer spare time is up to yis!
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Old 15 August 2014, 14:19   #27
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I presume that a Pinny doesn't count as a uniform then?
Its only uniform if they match - what colour is yours?
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Old 15 August 2014, 14:34   #28
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Its only uniform if they match - what colour is yours?
You mean they're not ALL Cerise with an ermine trim?
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Old 15 August 2014, 15:32   #29
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Getting a dedicated channel is the thin end of the wedge, similar to 101.
without being cynical whats wrong with 101. I like the idea that if I want to speak to the police on a non-urgent matter I don't need to know if I call Durham or Darlington or Northumbria (who bizzarely seem to cover South of the tyne too!)... There may well be things I've 999'd for in the past because I wanted to report it but wasn't in a position to know who my local station was and so had to take the choice of report or dont and risk using 999 for something that arguably wasn't an emergency.... although i've never called to report my bus pass missing or that kind of tat!

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Give it a few years & they will be handling routine traffic & passage information as the proper CG make "efficiencies",
As poly suggests if that means they will take my plan, track me and log me safe that sounds a good thing compared to CG. My concern would be that everyone says even though CG don't track you they do log it so if you are reported late they can find you in the log etc. Provided NCI could find a way to make their log accessible to the CG I don't see an issue...

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that's when the duplication & confusion will arise.
Already happens. People go to RNLI stations to get help instead of CG. People call ambulances to cliff incidents. 95% have obtained designated status with the CG so meet a standard which presumably includes when to refer.

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Do you call the CG or NCI or Ghostbusters
Never call ghostbusters - they have big hoovers - they will suck up all the sea...

Did similar issues exist in the days of MRCCs, MRSC, and Look-outs.?

999 gets you one person and you don't care which banner is above their desk

Red button on the DSC will do the same unless you are needing relayed in which case I'll let Poly and Willk in their Cerise Pinnies relay my call if thats all thats available...

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Then the day will arrive when a crucial bit of information failed to get passed from one agency to the other & someone dies,
...
Then some bright spark in Whitehall will decide to amalgamate the CG with NCI, re-brand it & voila! a "new improved" National Coastguard Agency, on the cheap, half staffed by volunteers or getting minimum wage.
Or we could all pay a contribution to have a fully paid service?
Oh thats right we have retained firemen, first responders, special constables... Oh and the RNLI!

But they've never managed (?wanted) to absorb the RNLI within officialdom...
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It already happens in the Police/PCSO's,
They aren't perfect... but PCSOs mean that lots of dross that you'd generally say the police shouldn't need to deal with but get tangled up with can be dealt with them while the proper cops can go catch bad guys.
Only thing I never understood was why PCSOs and not special's... ...I guess not many people volunteer to be spat at, kicked, punched and sworn at so they need paying...

I don't see you being asked to listen to CH 65. I'd expect them to need to call on 16 - although not sure if they are allowed... Perhaps as we all move to DSC and AIS they'll just "phone you up"..
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Old 15 August 2014, 15:42   #30
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Seeing as how the RNLI is awash with money we might actually be better provided for if the Coastguard was done away with completely and replaced with a voluntary organisation!
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