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RNLI appeal for public help to track down faulty emergency beacon

Lifeboats News Release

Peterhead lifeboat has now launched five times to what is believed to be a faulty EPIRB (Emergency Position-Indicating Radio Beacon). The RNLI and the Coastguard are now appealing to the public for information on this troublesome piece of kit.

Example EPIRB

RNLI/Henry Weaver

Example EPIRB

An EPIRB is a device which is usually automatically activated upon contact with water, in an emergency, to send out a distress signal and an approximate position. This particular beacon seems to intermittently activate for a short period and then stops transmitting.

Frustratingly, the device does not remain on for long enough to get a fix on its location. Based on the approximate source of the signal there’s a good chance it’s on land somewhere.

It’s likely that the device has been left in storage somewhere and forgotten about, it may now have come into contact with water which has caused it to send out a distress signal.

If anyone knows of a device like this which may be in storage somewhere, locked in a garage or stuck up a tree, please call the Coastguard Operations Centre in Aberdeen on 01224 592334.

Please see pictures of a similar EPIRB attached for help in tracking the device down, the one in question might not look quite the same and may be considerably more worn. It’s probably around 25cm in length and 10cm wide.

RNLI media contacts

Henry Weaver, RNLI Regional Media Manager for Scotland, 01738 642986, 07771 943026, henry_weaver@rnli.org.uk

Gemma McDonald, RNLI Regional Media Officer for Scotland, gemma_mcdonald@rnli.org.uk

RNLI Press Office, 01202 336789

Key facts about the RNLI

The RNLI charity saves lives at sea. Its volunteers provide a 24-hour search and rescue service around the United Kingdom and Republic of Ireland coasts. The RNLI operates over 238 lifeboat stations in the UK and Ireland and more than 240 lifeguard units on beaches around the UK and Channel Islands. The RNLI is independent of Coastguard and government and depends on voluntary donations and legacies to maintain its rescue service. Since the RNLI was founded in 1824, its lifeboat crews and lifeguards have saved over 142,700 lives.

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Contacting the RNLI - public enquiries

Members of the public may contact the RNLI on 0300 300 9990 (UK) or 1800 991802 (Ireland) or or by email.

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