Hopefully, you will never have to make a call which starts with these three repeated words but it’s a call that every boatie should know how to make and rehearse regularly so you are prepared for any emergency.
To send a MayDay call if you are in grave or imminent danger, use marine radio VHF Channel 16 and follow this procedure.
MAYDAY MAYDAY MAYDAY
* THIS IS (Name of vessel & call sign x 3)
* State vessel’s position in degrees and minutes of latitude & longitude or bearing & distance relative to a well-known geographical feature.
* State the nature of distress & the kind of assistance required.
* Any other information which may assist rescuers – number of persons on board, description of vessel, life raft, EPIRB.
Allow a short period for reply. If no answer, activate your EPIRB & repeat the distress call working through all the distress frequencies.
If contact is made, inform them that you have activated your EPIRB. Do NOT turn it off until told to do so by rescue authorities.
The same procedure applies if you are on land and have a communications radio or mobile phone with you. Try this before setting off your Personal Locator Beacon (PLB).