2018 New York State Boater's Guide - 49

you can provide will better improve the likelihood that search
units will be able to locate you in the event you break down or
need assistance. Should your plans change during your trip,
be certain to notify the individual with whom you've filled your
float plan. (See sample on page 42)

Your Marine Radio and the FCC

A marine radio is a wise investment in safety for any recreational
boater planning to venture any distance from shore or to any area
where immediate rescue is unlikely. Your marine radio will allow
you to request marine assistance or towing services, in non-emergency situations, from a variety of commercial services. Distress
and mayday calling should be limited to medical emergencies or
other situations where the safety of those on board is threatened.
Current Federal Communications Commission regulations exempt
small recreational boats, operating domestically, from needing to
carry a ship station or operator license.

Changes in Marine
Radio Communications

Commercial vessels that are required to be
Global Maritime Distress and Safety System
(GMDSS) compliant are no longer required to
maintain a listening watch on VHF channel 16.
The U.S. Coast Guard encourage all recreational vessels not
required to participate in GMDSS to carry a system to enhance
safety, particularly if you venture offshore away from the more
populated recreational boating areas. The recommended primary
system would be a digitally selective calling (DSC) marine radio
and an Emergency Position Indicator Radio Beacon (EPIRB). For
more information on GMDSS please contact the U.S. Coast Guard.
Cell phones - many recreational boaters rely on cell phones as
their primary means of marine communication. And while a cell
phone can be useful in many situations it should not replace your
marine (VHF) radio. In emergency situations your 911 call may be
misdirected to police or fire departments thus delaying rescue.
Cell calls can not be contacted by rescue boats and aircraft. Your
cell phone should supplement your VHF, not replace it. If you must
49



Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of 2018 New York State Boater's Guide

Table of Contents
2018 New York State Boater's Guide - Cover1
2018 New York State Boater's Guide - Cover2
2018 New York State Boater's Guide - 1
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