Akuna Bay Cruising Club

Marine Radio - DSC update (Kaptain Kaos)

Monday 19 September, 2005

Many new VHF marine radios are now fitted with DSC (Digital Selective Calling), which enables 'private' calls to be made to other radios with a DSC function. This means your call cannot be heard by anyone who happens to be on the same radio channel.
To use this facility you need an MMSI (Maritime Mobile Service Identifier) number, but to obtain this number you must have a Marine Radio Licence.

VHF Radios with the DSC function have a "DISTRESS" button (which can be linked to your GPS). The function of this button, when activated, is send a digital distress call, giving your vessel details and (if linked with GPS) your exact location.

HOWEVER !! this distress function WILL NOT operate unless a legitimate MMSI number has been programmed into the radio. So if you have a new VHF Marine Radio with the DSC function, don't be lulled into a false sense of security by the "Distress" button.
Simply sit for you MROCP licence, apply for your MMSI number and make it all happen.