-- Last Updated: Oct-11-05 2:25 PM EST --

Anyone carry Personal Locator Beacons when paddling?

The satellite beacons that are like little EPIRBs for your person.

It’s always in my PFD pocket and that’s usually around somewhere close by when paddling.

are you talking a strobe
or satellite beacon. I always have a strobe at sea, never gotten to the sat. thing, I paddle Massachusetts mostly, and my VHF would likely be received.

is a Personal Locator Beacon. A satellite based system to identify you and your location once activated. I carry a VHF also.

E- mergency

P -ositioning

I -ndacator

R - adio

B - eacon

Typically they are automatic activation or manual activation. Once activated the EPIRB will send a signal to a satellite and I guess Coast guard stations world wide.



and there are different types
The newest ones are very compact, very tough, and can have a gps built in or connected. They can carry a programed message with your ID, your rescue message, and your gps location sent out. This reduces false or accidental signals being triggered, and the time they would need to find you and reduces the risk to the rescuers finding you as well.

There are downsides to this system. It, by law must be used only for serious life and death emergencies. Others means of distress calls me be much more immediate and save your life. Cell phone, VHF radio, and distress signals as well as sat phones are all to be considered depending on your whereabouts, degree of separation from land, storm, fog, ocean, etc.