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Old 02-07-2009, 08:22   #1
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VPIRBs: What Say You? (No, Not EPIRBs)

As anyone else seen VPIRB's - VPIRB: EPIRB: PLB: Marine Safety Equipment

If so what are your thoughts?

It seems to be a good idea to me, especially for off shore sailing. To my mind, they are close to ideal for a MOB situation. IMO, the two problems for MOB are
1. Knowing if someone has gone over the side.
2. Locating them if lost from sight (very easy to lose sight of them)

PLB's don't alert the parent boat and it can be quite difficult to establish communications from the parent boat to a national RCC. Of course the RCC might know the exact location of a MOB if the PLB is embedded with a GPS but how to get that info to the parent vessel.

Remembering the nearest rescue vessel would be the parent vessel, it would seem logical that the parent vessel should get the alarm and location. I had been working on a design to have a 406 MHz receiver and decoder on board to receive and decode a PLB (with GPS) to do a similar job when I came across this unit which seems to be the answer.

BTW, I have no association with the design, manufacture or sales of VPIRBs.
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Old 02-07-2009, 10:19   #2
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It looks very good. Man overboard is the single most accident we worry about on Jedi as it's only the two of us aboard and one might be sleeping during night watches.

We currently have the Mobilert system which works well. You do not get updates when currents move the location of the MOB but just going back to the initial MOB location and drifting to determine course and speed of MOB gives a good enough indication of present MOB position (both initial GPS position plus time elapsed is continuously available).

We also have a personal strobe light on us and plan to buy those "pen flares" when we find them.

ciao!
Nick.
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Old 02-07-2009, 11:32   #3
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A little pricy ($749.00USD/Ea) for my taste; but whatever makes one feel good, at cost once can accept (is a good idea).

As they disclaim: “No device is 100% fail safe nor can it guarantee safe rescue in an emergency...
This device is not, and may not be, offered for sale or lease, or sold or leased, until FCC authorization is obtained...”
Mobilarm - Mobilarm V100 VPIRB | Mobilarm - Man overboard safety systems
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Old 02-07-2009, 18:16   #4
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I kinda like safety harnesses.
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Old 05-07-2009, 11:41   #5
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I foresee a lot of false alarms with the automatic initiation feature. If I was making the unit, I would use both the DSC and AIS systems.
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