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Marine safety device no longer approved, department says

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com m unoti iunbPress ReleaseNo. 82/98 Date 23 December '‘ " . λ• - · * ;v/.MARINE SAFETY DEVICE NO LONGER APPROVED, DEPARTMENT SAYSA spokesman for the Department of Communications warned boat- owners today that a marine safety device known as the SEACALL . . .TP-21 was no longer approved by the Department.The device, one of a range of emergency position indication radio beacons, or EPIRBs, is a battery operated radio transmitter which sends out repetitive emergency signals on both the international civil and military aircraft distress frequencies.Devices such as these are normally carried on yachts, fishing vessels and other small craft. They are designed to help save lives at sea, particularly when search and rescue operations are mounted.When DOC originally approved SEACALL TP-21 prototype units those submitted for testing performed adequately, the spokesman said.However, recent tests conducted by the Department in consultation with the Department of Transport and Construction, showed that performance of significant numbers of the unit was not acceptable."Many people will be going to sea over the holiday period and may have this unit installed in their craft," the spokesman said."We are most concerned at this situation because owners of these units may be unaware that in an emergency they could malfunction."He said the Department recommended that any owners of the SEACALL TP-21 units, before venturing out in their boats, should have these units checked and if necessary replace them with a correctly functioning unit.23 December 1982