Friday, March 6, 2009

Don't Trash The Beacon!

EPIRBs - Sydney Exhibition Centre - Sydney International Boat Show 2006

So you are a good boater and heeded the call to switch your 121.5 beacon to a more accurate 406 type EPIRB. You have read the information on how they work and have properly registered your beacon as well. Now what? Just throw the old beacon away, right? Not so fast.

Just because the United States Coast Guard no longer answers 121.5 beacon activations that doesn't mean the devices are silent. In fact, many general aircraft still have 121.5 beacons on board. Who is responding to these 121.5 alerts? The Civil Air Patrol.

The Civil Air Patrol has launched a campaign to alert 121.5 beacon owners on the proper way of disposing of their old beacons. Read more about proper disposal procedures here. Improperly disposed of beacons means a volunteer air crew may have to risk their lives to search for a false alarm.

How do you dispose of a beacon?
  1. Remove the battery!
  2. Dispose of the device at an approved electronic disposal facility.
  3. Register your new 406 beacon here.

(photo courtesy of Flickr, uploaded by Charlie Brewer)

1 comment:

John said...

I had a chance to sit in on a CAP meeting last year. what a great organization, not only for their SAR functions but for their youth leadership programs as well.