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Old 24-10-2011, 11:06   #16
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Re: Fake distress calls

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While not a fake distress call I did hear a fella making "radio check" calls on 16 one day with very slurred speech. He was at it off and on for 90 minutes. After the last one someone asked if he was the white boat anchored near whatever. He said yes. In response the other person said "This is the US Coast Guard, prepare to be boarded."

I just chuckled.
I heard a really good one once: After ten minutes of endless "can I get a radio check on 16?" Someone chimed in and said "Would you call 911 to check your phone? Try channel 9" That shut him up.
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Old 24-10-2011, 18:31   #17
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Re: Fake Distress Calls

Fake maydays. If you ask me, my solution to them is simple. Shackle the offender to a piling at low tide and leave him for the fish. End of story.

I have the greatest respect for the Coast Guard and SAR people who put themselves in danger to help someone in trouble and this sort of garbage adds to the chances they may not come home. Not worth prison time or community service or any of that. Fish bait.
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Old 24-10-2011, 18:45   #18
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Re: Fake distress calls

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Originally Posted by unbusted67 View Post
I heard a really good one once: After ten minutes of endless "can I get a radio check on 16?" Someone chimed in and said "Would you call 911 to check your phone? Try channel 9" That shut him up.

Fantastic.
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Old 24-10-2011, 21:24   #19
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Re: Fake Distress Calls

The rule for the USCG is simple, you always respond, even if you "think" it is a hoax. As one poster pointed out, it might not be, and no Coastie wants to be the one who has to tells someone's mother why we didn't save their kid or husband or.......... Never ASS-U-ME Besides, it's the right thing to do. But you are right it costs the taxpayer a lot of money and wastes a lot of valuable time, and while prosecuting one false case you may be without assets to respond to another.

Yes there are ways to identify where the call came from. Plus the FCC gets involved with hoax calls as well. These can result in really BIG fines.
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Old 25-10-2011, 06:23   #20
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Re: Fake Distress Calls

one poster wrote:

heard a story a few years ago of a child making a call. Apparently it was assumed to be fake and was not followed up. It turns out it was real, the childs father was lost overboard and ultimitly the boat the child was on crashed up on a breakwater with the child and father both lost.t

i think you may be referring to the t ragic loss of the s/v morning dew which was on its delivery trip into charleston harbor when it hit the breakwater. a boy on the boat got out a faint mayday... the cg thought it heard the mayday but when no 2nd call came in , did not do an extended search.. they didnt get a triangulation as it was 4 am no one else was around. in midmorning , a couple walking a dog found the bodies of all 4 formerly aboard . this tragedy changed the way the uscg treated its receipt of suspect maydays.. the full article was in cruising world some years back..

as for us on the gt lakes , we monitor 16. when we hear a mayday i am on the vhf asking for vessel name and GPS location..
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Old 25-10-2011, 06:25   #21
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Re: Fake Distress Calls

here are a few links to that tragedy.. there was a huge lawsuit against the cg , Hurd v. US..
Hurd v. United States (4th Cir. 2002)
Hurd v. United States (4th Cir. 2002)
None of the passengers onboard the thirty-four foot sailboat survived. ... At approximately 2:17 a.m. on December 29, 1997, the MORNING DEW struck the north jetty lead- ... (Id.) There were no eyewitnesses to the accident and no survivors. ...

also see;
Maritime Accidents - Case Studies
Maritime Accidents - Case Studies
Jump to The Loss of the "Morning Dew"‎: ~Loss of the Morning Dew with All Hands~ ... recreational sailing vessel Morning Dew struck the rock ...
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Old 25-10-2011, 08:47   #22
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Re: Fake Distress Calls

Wow. I've never read an NTSB Accident Report before. Very sad and sobering.
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Old 25-10-2011, 12:00   #23
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Re: Fake Distress Calls

What do others think about going all digital on the radios? If they required all radios to be licenced then as soon as you click over the mic the CG would know who you are. This also brings in the question of "Big Brother."

Dave
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Old 25-10-2011, 16:28   #24
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Re: Fake Distress Calls

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i think you may be referring to the t ragic loss of the s/v morning dew which was on its delivery trip into charleston harbor when it hit the breakwater. a boy on the boat got out a faint mayday...
Yes, that was the tragic story. Thanks for filling in the details however I thought the CG thought it was a hoax but I may be misremembering.

It shows how important it is to teach all crew members how to use the radio.
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Old 25-10-2011, 16:41   #25
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Re: Fake Distress Calls

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What do others think about going all digital on the radios? If they required all radios to be licenced then as soon as you click over the mic the CG would know who you are. This also brings in the question of "Big Brother."

Dave
I think it would be a problem unless it could be guaranteed to be 100% coverage. As recreational boats are not even required to have radios at all, that could not be enforced.

In many emergency situations the first responders may be other recreational boats. In the same way that using a cellphone is not recommended because it is only a person to person call, a digital signal would not be heard by those who don't have digital radios.

On the other hand, when I bought my boat, the first thing I installed as a DSC radio (althoough I have to admit it took me two years to hook it up to a GPS ).

As for Big Brother, that is always a concern but I think a greater danger is AIS transmitters where BB can track your movement.

Edit: Also, I think a poor analogue signal will communicate more than a poor digital signal (even if garbled).
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Old 25-10-2011, 17:04   #26
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Re: Fake Distress Calls

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Originally Posted by ddsailor25 View Post
What do others think about going all digital on the radios? If they required all radios to be licenced then as soon as you click over the mic the CG would know who you are. This also brings in the question of "Big Brother."

Dave
Why not.

The same should apply to the Internet. I hate this when people shoot all kinds of crap because they feel they will never get caught. Things I say I say them and I am ready to stand by them, or bark them back when applicable. VHF, www or the Hyde Park.

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Old 26-10-2011, 19:39   #27
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Re: Fake Distress Calls

Use DSC Distress call for real emergencies....it lights up the Coast Guard net like nobody's business.
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Old 27-10-2011, 06:07   #28
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Re: Fake Distress Calls

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Use DSC Distress call for real emergencies....it lights up the Coast Guard net like nobody's business.
Especially if it is properly registered and is hooked up to a GPS. Luckily I haven't had to use it but I have seen many relay alerts going over the system with everything from boats run aground, swimmers in distress to a plane crash...
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Old 27-10-2011, 07:02   #29
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Re: Fake Distress Calls

DSC is the way to go. I'm frankly shocked about the lack of awareness of the capabilities that this system brings to bear. As a new boater, when I learned of it, it guided my choices on VHF gear and chartplotter interfacing capability.

I got the Standard Horizon GX-2150 since not only does it do the full range of DSC functionality but also has an AIS receiver and passes both for chartplotter overlay. I also got the SH HX-851 handheld as the complement to the GX-2150 as I can now test all DSC functionality without false alarms being generated. Then I can do effective round-trip radio checks using DSC test to Coast MMSI numbers, so no more verbal radio checks for me.
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Old 27-10-2011, 09:42   #30
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Re: Fake Distress Calls

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(...) so no more verbal radio checks for me.
Ask others, but IMHO the DSC test may work out fine where a voice call could have issues. There is some difference (my guess) between a digital transmission and a voice. In any case, does not hurt to test the voice from time to time just by talking with a local buddy gone fishing. ;-)

Remember you MUST feed your MMSI number into your VHF to use ANY of its DSC functionality. I know you know, but some of us really do not! Just talking.

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