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Old 21-12-2006, 03:02   #1
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121.5/243 MHZ EPIRBs PROHIBITED

”The Coast Guard reminds all boaters that beginning January 1, 2007, both 121.5 and 243 MHz Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacons (EPIRBs) are prohibited from use in both commercial and recreational watercraft. Boaters wishing to have an emergency rescue beacon aboard their vessel must have a digital 406 MHz model ...”

Goto: BOATERS MUST NOT OPERATE 121.5/243 MHZ EPIRBs AFTER 31 DECEMBER 2006
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Old 21-12-2006, 06:58   #2
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Yes, But....

See interesting discussion on this topic on the SSCA Board here:

SSCA Discussion Board :: View topic - COAST GUARD AUXILIARY REMINDS US:NEW RULES FOR EPIRBs

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Old 21-12-2006, 11:10   #3
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Huh? I thought this had been extended to 2009.
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Old 21-12-2006, 12:34   #4
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Can the old ones get an up grade or is the $$$$ down the drain????
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Old 21-12-2006, 13:45   #5
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No, you can't upgrade the old ones.

As for "$$$ down the drain" and "2009", see discussion on SSCA Board, as suggested.

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Old 21-12-2006, 13:49   #6
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I think "prohibited" is a bit of a misnomer. The 121 & 243 frequencies will no longer be monitored, is all.
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Old 21-12-2006, 14:00   #7
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It may be so for non-U.S. vessels. U.S. users are prohibited from using their 121 MHz EPIRBs beginning Jan 1, 2007.

"The regulation applies to all Class A, B, and S 121.5/243 MHz EPIRBs. It does not affect 121.5/243 MHz man overboard devices which are designed to work directly with a base alerting unit only and not with the satellite system."

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Old 21-12-2006, 14:13   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Weyalan
I think "prohibited" is a bit of a misnomer. The 121 & 243 frequencies will no longer be monitored, is all.
“Prohibited” is a direct quote from the linked USCG Press Release at:
http://www.piersystem.com/go/doc/786/139352/

<quote> ”… both 121.5 and 243 MHz Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacons (EPIRBs) are prohibited from use in both commercial and recreational watercraft …” <end quote> (emphasis mine)


I don’t make these things up – I just report them.
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Old 21-12-2006, 19:46   #9
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epirbs

Simple solution.Stay out of US waters.If I'm needing an epirb , while my life is threatened , screw uncle Sam. Is using one a capital offfence ? Would any Judge hold one to account for saving one's own life? Some are kinda dense.
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Old 21-12-2006, 21:03   #10
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No need for histrionics. The U.S. and international regulations clearly state that in a bonafide emergency a mariner may use ANY MEANS to attract attention and get help.

Insofar as I'm concerned, "ANY MEANS" includes the use of transmitting equipment, including EPIRBs, on any frequency....licensed or not.

This has always been the case with HF radio. Nothing stops the non-ham from using the ham bands in a bonafide emergency. The same is likely the case for "prohibited" EPIRB equipment.

However, as has been stated, the MONITORING of satellite systems for 121/243 EPIRBs will be winding down INTERNATIONALLY, and will be discontinued in a couple of years.

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Old 21-12-2006, 21:10   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by btrayfors
However, as has been stated, the MONITORING of satellite systems for 121/243 EPIRBs will be winding down INTERNATIONALLY, and will be discontinued in a couple of years.
Major Tom to ground controllllllllllll?
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Old 21-12-2006, 21:26   #12
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Where you are going to have the issue is when you are boarded for inspection, my guess is that if you have a 121/243 they will either write a ticket, take it or scuttle the boat, throw you overboard and speed off all the while hollering "Where's EPIRB now sucka".

Ok so the latter isnt even a possibility.
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Old 29-12-2006, 07:33   #13
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epirbs

Hi since I am happy to scan this site for helpfull advise, I guess I will have to "contribute" as well sometime. The 121.5/243 system has been good but suffered a lot of false activation resulting in unneccessary high cost of SAR. The new 400mhz system will provide more information encoded with the transmission like from the basic of the vessel & owner details to just what type of emergency has occured & in some the GPS co-ords. The location on the earth can still be by the 121.5 mhz signal which is also transmitted by the new units. All commercial aircraft will still monitor 121.5 on their second VHF radio. I will replace my 121.5 with a new 400 mhz when the battery expire date comes up as the epirbs do save lives. Be a good realist & see the advantages of this change for the better!! Big gains for small cost from us boaties.

Bill sailing cat "GoldRush" Qld
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Old 29-12-2006, 22:43   #14
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If your boat sinks, I doubt they will throw you in jail for setting off a 121.5 epirb, because the search and rescue teams will not hear your call for help.

I don't really see much utility to a device that calls for help, when the people who you expect to provide that help are not listening...
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Old 30-12-2006, 07:42   #15
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Mark,

Perhaps you missed the whole point re: 121.5 EPIRBs after satellite monitoring winds down.

The new 406 EPIRBs which are unquestionably superior to the older ones (and far more expensive, by the way) themselves have a 121.5 capability! This is to assist SAR efforts when they get close, by putting out a low-power beacon which can be homed on by ships and aircraft. Personal locator beacons also use this same frequency.

There are lots of ways to let distant SAR facilities know you're in trouble and need assistance, not just by setting off an EPIRB. These include: HF radio (voice and email), VHF radio, and satphones....some or all of which are found aboard most cruising boats IN ADDITION TO the EPIRB(s).

In any case, all this will be moot, Coot, as the batteries die out in the old 121.5 EPIRBs in a few years.

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