- MAYDAY is a distress call of the highest priority. Spoken three times, it shows that a person, boat, or aircraft is threatened by grave or imminent danger and requires immediate assistance. Broadcast on 2182 kHz or Channel 16. A MAYDAY call has absolute priority over all other transmissions and shall not be addressed to a particular station. All boat operators hearing a MAYDAY call should immediately cease transmissions that may interfere with the distress traffic, and continue to listen on the distress message’s frequency.
- PAN-PAN: Broadcast on 2182 kHz or Channel 16, this urgency signal consists of three repetitions of the group of words “PAN-PAN” (pahn-pahn). It means that the calling Station has a very urgent message to transmit concerning the safety of a ship, aircraft, vehicle, or person.
- SECURITY: “SECURITÉ” (SEE-CURE-IT-TAY) is a safety signal spoken three times and transmitted on 2182 kHz or Channel 16. It indicates a message concerning the safety of navigation, or important weather warnings will be transmitted on 2670 kHz or Channel 22.
- To attract the attention of listeners on the frequency.
- To activate the automatic listening devices found on large ships and occasionally at shore Stations.
In areas where communications with one or more Coast Guard shore stations is possible, you should wait a short period of time to allow the Coast Guard to acknowledge receipt of the distress signal. When involved with a distress situation on channel 16, do not attempt to change or shift to a working channel until enough information is obtained to handle the distress in case communications are lost during the change of channels.
Labels: Safe Boat Operations