Safety and Distress Radiotelephone Procedures - TP 9878 E
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Table of Contents
- Before Departing
- Early Alerting of SAR
- Distress Procedures
- Distress, Urgency and Distress, Urgency and Safety
- Canceling a False VHF-DSC Distress Alert
- Phonetic Alphabet
- Example of Distress Procedure (MAYDAY)
- Example of Urgency Procedure (PAN PAN)
- Have you left a sail plan with a responsible person ashore?
- Does your voyage plan take into consideration adverse weather, navigational hazards and fuel requirements?
- Have you verified that your radio equipment is operational?
- Have you charged and checked any batteries used to power radio equipment for emergency communications?
- If equipped with VHF-DSC (Digital Selective Calling), do you have a valid MMSI* number and have you connected the radio to your GPS?
- If equipped with an EPIRB, have you registered* your EPIRB with the Canadian beacon registry?
- Do you have suitable visual distress signals onboard? (flares, signaling light, etc)
Transport Canada strongly recommends you report, without delay, any situation that has the potential to constitute a danger to life. Time lost in the initial stages of a potential distress incident cannot be regained and may be crucial to the outcome. See example for URGENCY (PAN PAN) message.
For use only when in grave and imminent danger and IMMEDIATE ASSISTANCE is required.
- Send DSC Alert
- Send distress call on VHF CH16
- Activate EPIRB
1. Send DSC Alert
Ensure radio is switched on. Press and hold the red “distress” button for 5 seconds.
2. Send distress call on VHF CH16
Switch to VHF CH16 and transmit distress call and message:
MAYDAY MAYDAY MAYDAY
THIS IS ___________________________(Vessel name 3 times)
MAYDAY followed by vessel name and MMSI number
NATURE OF DISTRESS ______________________________
AID REQUIRED _____________________________________
NUMBER OF PERSONS ON BOARD ___________________
If outside of VHF coverage, send the distress message on
2182 kHz or use other suitable means of communication.
3. Activate EPIRB
Activate EPIRB (or PLB) by following directions printed on beacon body. Take EPIRB with you to the survival craft.
Ensure EPIRB is vertical, with antenna pointed upward.
Transmit on VHF CH16: All stations, All stations, All stations, this is ______ (vessel name) MMSI number ______, position ______ North, ______ West,
Cancel my distress alert of date and time. This is ______
(vessel name) MMSI number _____, Out.
Press distress alert button followed by distress message “MAYDAY, MAYDAY, MAYDAY, This is NONSUCH, NONSUCH, NONSUCH. MAYDAY NONSUCH MMSI 316999999, position 49° 04.6’ North 123° 18.8’ West. Ship has taken on water and in danger of capsizing, I require immediate assistance, 4 persons on board, are taking to liferaft, Over.”
“PAN PAN, PAN PAN, PAN PAN, St. John’s Coast Guard Radio, St. John’s Coast Guard Radio, St. John’s Coast Guard Radio, This is NONSUCH, NONSUCH, NONSUCH. MMSI 316999999, 5 miles East of Cape Bonavista, 5 Persons on Board, we have taken on water in lazarette and are presently trying to pump out excess water, Over”.
* MMSI numbers and 406 MHz EPIRB registration are available free-of-charge from Industry Canada and the National Search and Rescue Secretariat, 1-800-727-9414 respectively.
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