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Old 01-10-2019, 14:31   #1
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MAF recommends ending HF monitoring in Australia

Well, this worries me.... I understand this will not affect DSC equipped radios, however it would mean that a failure of the DSC system on your HF rig would render the radio useless for emergency calling.

“MAF has recommended that jurisdictions (the States and Northern Territory) cease high frequency (HF) radiotelephone monitoring of distress and safety communications in Australia

https://www.mast.tas.gov.au/maritime...-in-australia/
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Old 01-10-2019, 15:31   #2
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Re: MAF recommends ending HF monitoring in Australia

As a long time HF radio user I find that a bit sad, but I guess I understand. A total of 8 calls over the past four years. That's a lot of resources to tie up for that level of response.

I guess EPIRBs have taken over, AMSA sees 1300 EPIRB events/year (source). Of course 1100 of those are spurious, with HF comms it might be a bit easier to work out the false alarms since you're talking

I already miss some of the HF radio services, but I'm not too surprised given all the more convenient options that are now available.
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Old 01-10-2019, 19:16   #3
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Re: MAF recommends ending HF monitoring in Australia

I do see their dilemma, and I was very surprised at the infrequency of the calls. (Mind you, I get a little skeptical about numbers that support an argument, I am sure there are many ways define an emergency call.)

The thing is, I don’t actually know another boat around me with DSC HF. I suppose they are out there, but I bet they are pretty rare in Oz.

EPIRBS clearly are more common than ever, but there’s something very absolute about pushing the button on an EPIRB. I always felt good about the thought that a more nuanced approach might be possible using the HF. Now I do have DSC HF, so in theory I’ll be fine, but I don’t like the idea that the DSC component has to work properly.

I will be curious to see the response of various VMRs around the country, many of whom do seem to have a HF radio in their monitoring arsenal.
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