TowBoat/US Provides Free DSC-VHF Radio Checks For Boaters
Press release from Boat/US.
TowBoat/US Provides Free DSC-VHF Radio Checks For Boaters In Gulf, FL Atlantic Coast
New Service to Ensure Your High-Tech Radio is Working Properly
ALEXANDRIA, Va. June 18, 2009 - With some help from Towboat/US companies on the Gulf and Atlantic coasts from Alabama to New Jersey, recreational boaters will now get peace of mind knowing they have correctly installed their new Digital Selective Calling (DSC) VHF marine radio - and it's functional. A free, DSC-VHF radio check service is now being offered under a single Towboat/US digital hailing number, 0-338-04000, which allows boaters to easily call their local Towboat/US tower for a complimentary DSC-VHF radio check.
The Towboat/US 0-338-04000 MMSI (Maritime Mobile Service Identity) number is available to boaters hailing from the Gulf Coast at Mobile, AL, Florida and the Atlantic coast up to Sandy Hook, NJ. When this number is "dialed" on a DSC-VHF radio keypad, a boater will automatically be connected to the closest Towboat/US port or response boat within radio range.
"By helping to ensure that this lifesaving device is working properly, we improve boaters' safety. That's important to all of us," said BoatUS Vice President of Towing Services Jerry Cardarelli.
While nearly all fixed mount VHF radios sold today are DSC equipped, boaters have reported that it can be hard to complete a digital radio check unless they have the MMSI of another boater.
DSC-VHF radios offer significant safety improvements over a standard VHF radio. A DSC-VHF includes a mayday distress button that allows anyone on board to summon emergency help. When connected to a GPS, the radio will give rescuers your exact location information.
In addition, these radios work seamlessly with the US Coast Guard's modern "Rescue 21" system, now operating on the Gulf Coast, Florida and Eastern seaboard up to Long Island, NY. More regions are scheduled to get Rescue 21 service throughout 2009-2011. The system already has proven to greatly reduce search times for boaters seeking rescue. These new radios also offer more improved telephone-like enhancements, such as "direct" calling.
If you'd like to learn more about DSC-VHF radios, go to the free, online DSC-VHF tutorial at BoatUS.com/mmsi where you can also register to receive an MMSI number for your own DSC radio.