Use of standard procedures as described in the Marine Radio Operators Handbook avoids confusion and shortens transmitting time. Unnecessary chatter can mask a weak call for help and one day that may be your call.
Your marine radio is your communication lifeline so it is important to remember that you:
- Do not transmit unnecessarily
- Listen before transmitting and avoid interfering with other stations
- Use one of the following initial calling/distress channels:
– 27mHz channel 88
– VHF channel 16, or
– HF frequencies 4125, 6215 and 8291 KHz
- Maintain best contact and be guided by the coast station for distress messages
- Arrange to switch to a working channel once you have contacted the station you have called for non-distress messages
- Always use your call sign or the name of the vessel for identification
- Keep messages brief and clear
- Are familiar with the type and syntax of emergency, urgency and safety messages
- Give your position, the nature of the distress, the time afloat, the type of vessel and the number of people involved if making a distress call
- Stop transmitting when requested to do so by a coast station.