It seems like common sense, but sometimes the obvious things are the easiest to forget.
NSW Police and the Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA) are encouraging distress beacon owners to ensure they have a current GPS encoded 406MHz beacon registered with AMSA following an increase in incidents relating to out-dated and unregistered beacons.
Between October 2012 and October 2013, New South Wales 20 per cent of nearly 1500 beacon activations detected around the country with the majority coming from hikers and recreational vessels.
Inadvertent beacon activations due to mishandling or malfunctioning beacons accounted for 102 incidents across the state in the 12 months to October. Activations relating to real distress situations accounted for 42 of all incidents (14 per cent) in New South Wales.
You can register your beacons online at www.beacons.amsa.gov.au or over the phone by calling 1800 406 406.
You can save emergency services a lot of money and time by registering, meaning those resources can be put where they’re needed.