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[MUSIC PLAYING] All right, the igniter all set up? Rotate it. OK, and then just give it a whack. There you go, now hold on to the plastic part. In the unlikely event that you do have to abandon ship, your job will be to make yourself as visible as possible. To do this, use the signaling devices stored in your life boat or in your life raft. Your rescue depends on the ability of someone to find you. Distress signals are designed to make you seen and heard. In this program, we'll learn about the various types of visual distress signals, such as flares, strobes, and smoke canisters, and when to use them; Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacons, or EPIRBs, when they are required, and how to register yours; and we'll discuss distress call procedures and how to correctly make a mayday call. Visual distress signals are included in the equipment package onboard life rafts that have properly packed and supplied. They can include such manual devices as flashlights and portable strobe lights. Most survival craft have flares on board. So you want to make sure that you light off a flare so that an aircraft or a searching vessel can find you. There's also smoke signals, which is a great day signal. Flares are day and night signals. They both work really well. And also the personal flotation device light that you wear is a really good survival signal to use. And the best we've found is the strobe light. At night or in the water is not the time to learn how to use a distress signal, especially signals known as pyrotechnics. These contain flammable materials and emit ash and slag that can cause painful burns or ignite materials in your life raft. Read all directions carefully. If you're signaling by day, you may use the buoyant orange smoke signal, the official daylight signal, or a combination of pistol-launch or handheld flares. These pyrotechnics can be used only once and must be used with caution. If you're signaling by night, use your handheld flares only if you're within range of potential rescuers. As a pilot, I believe the ideal distress signal for us any time at night time is the flare. With the unaided eye, you can see that for a great distance. It becomes a visual cue that's in your center field of view as you're out there flying because it usually comes up to about 200 feet above the water level. And that's during the daytime or during the nighttime. During the daytime, it's kind of limited to about seven miles, and it's kind of hard to see. Flares are great tools, but they can be misused. And if not timed properly, your flare will not be seen. So if the aircraft is facing you, and you can see that from the water, if you can look up and see they're coming towards you or they're flying by you, that's the best time to use the flare, obviously not when they're flying away, when they won't see it. There's typically a four-person crew on board for any regular SAR case. So chances are, we're going to see the flare, but it has to be within our view range. So anything from the sides to the front, we're most likely going to see. If you do abandon ship, you need to make yourself seen and heard. Do anything you can to make yourself bigger, brighter, and different from your surroundings. This could include tying a couple of rafts together, collecting debris, or staying as close to the abandoned vessel as you think is safe. Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacons, EPIRBs, are required on every commercial vessel traveling more than three miles from shore. An EPIRB is an emergency transmitting beacon that transmits ID information that's registered to your boat that goes directly to search and rescue worldwide. In the US, this would be the US Coast Guard, and they are authorized to come and rescue you immediately when they get your beacon ID and a position from an EPIRB. Prior to departing, vessels should register their EPIRBs and provide important safety information such as name, home port, length, and safety equipment at Here's how it works. When your EPIRB is activated, a signal beams directly to GSR satellites 22,000 miles above the Earth. Within two minutes, the Coast Guard Rescue Coordination Center will have your vessel's registered information. And within five minutes, even if you have not had a chance to call in a mayday, the Coast Guard will have an idea of your position within a 300 to 400 yard radius. This system worldwide has saved almost 30,000 lives and on average saves about 450 US citizens every year. In order to activate this system, though, every seafarer needs to understand some important features of EPIRBs. Category 1 EPIRBs are required on vessels 36 feet and longer. Category 1 EPIRBs are stored in a case held together with a hydrostatic release. This will release the unit from the vessel and allow it to float free. It will also turn on the EPIRB, though category 1 EPIRBs can also be manually activated. The EPIRB on your vessel is mounted where it can float free in the event of a rapid sinking. Every crew member should know both where it is located and how to release it. In addition to proper use, crew members also need to know how to properly maintain an EPIRB. EPIRB batteries must be changed every five years, and the hydrostatic releases on category 1 EPIRBs must be replaced every two years. Be sure to scratch off the expiration date on your release, so Coast Guard inspectors will know your maintenance is up to date. The important thing to remember about an EPIRB is after you've turned it on or it's been automatically activated by being immersed in water, a worldwide search and rescue system starts up. Its sole purpose is finding you and the source of this beacon. This is the age of global electronic communications. It's possible to locate and begin to help a vessel in distress virtually any place on the globe with amazing speed and accuracy. But first, you need to make the call. Mayday, mayday, mayday, it's fish vessel, Gladiator, Gladiator, Gladiator. Distress calls should be part of your regular drilling and training regimen, especially if new crew members are on board the vessel. The people that are on board the ship that need to know how to make a distress call is everybody. In other words, if the captain, for example, were to fall overboard, and if he's the only person or she's the only person that knows how to operate the radio, then you can't get a mayday off. So everybody onboard the vessel needs to be familiar with the radio. They need to know what channel to switch to. And every vessel has an emergency broadcast placard that has all the information that you need to repeat over the radio so that you can put out a mayday call. Here is the distress call procedure divided into six basic steps. First, make sure the communications equipment is turned on. Press and hold the red distress button for five seconds, then select the distress frequency used in your area. Note that VHF channel 16 and 2182 kilohertz are for emergency purposes only. Third, press the microphone button and speak slowly, clearly, and calmly. Say, mayday, three times followed by your vessel name three times. Mayday, mayday, mayday, this is fishing vessel Gladiator, fishing vessel Gladiator, fishing vessel Gladiator. Fourth, release the microphone button briefly and listen for acknowledgement. If no one answers, continue from your instructions to repeat the mayday, vessel identification, and give position, nature of your distress, number of people on board, number of injuries, condition and description of the vessel, lifesaving equipment, and the channel you'll be monitoring. Mayday, mayday, mayday. Fishing vessel Gladiator, Gladiator, Gladiator. Position 4, 7, 5, 8, decimal 3 north. There are five crewman, excuse me, eight crewman aboard. We have an engine room fire. Fifth, release the microphone button, and if the situation permits, stand by the radio for further communications and to await other responses. Finally, if there is no answer and the situation permits, repeat this call, then try another channel. A lot of seafarers making distress calls or even practicing them wonder what's going on on the other end of the line. After receiving your distress call, the Coast Guard will often launch a helicopter with a rescue swimmer aboard. The Coast Guard will also contact other vessels in your area to assist with the emergency. Remember to stay close to your radio as long as you deem it safe. Your vessel is always your safest point of refuge until help arrives or the loss of the vessel is certain. In this program, we learned some important information about distress signals and equipment, including the correct way to use visual signals, how to light flares, the benefits of strobe lights, and that when you use a signaling flare is critical to making sure you've been seen, what is an EPIRB, and how it can be the most important distress signal on your vessel. And we learned the proper way to make distress calls via radio to ensure all critical information will be received to send help on its way promptly. [MUSIC PLAYING]

Video Details

Duration: 11 minutes and 45 seconds
Language: English
License: Dotsub - Standard License
Genre: None
Views: 9
Posted by: maritimetraining on Feb 8, 2017


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