Imagine you’re away from the coast, you don’t even see land anymore. Now imagine that your boat is now taking on water and you don’t have cell phone reception.
What do you do?
The National Safe Boating Council’s Saved by the Beacon campaign is designed to educate recreational boaters about the importance of 406 MHz beacons and how to use them correctly in the case of a boating emergency. The campaign shares real-life examples of people who have been ‘Saved by the Beacon.’ The campaign will feature PSAs, infographics and a book, which will also be available as an e-book. Saved by the Beacon is produced under a grant from the Sports Fish Restoration and Boating Trust Fund, administered by the U.S. Coast Guard.
The Saved by the Beacon campaign launched at an event held in conjunction with the Miami Boat Show on February 11, 2015, co-hosted with NSBC Sustaining Member ACR Electronics. The NSBC introduced an expert panel from the U.S. Coast Guard, Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission, and NOAA to walk guests through a live search and rescue demonstration. In just two days, media efforts resulted in 12,619 impressions and 167 direct engagements, resulting in a 27.8% engagement rate.
To continue its educational outreach efforts, the NSBC collaborated with ACR Electronics as they declared April 6 (4/06) to be “406 MHz Beacon Awareness Day.” The NSBC and ACR held a contest asking people to tell everyone what their PLB or EPIRB frees them to do, and to include a picture of the activity or place their beacon gives them the confidence and freedom to go, using #406Day and #SavedbytheBeacon. The contest resulted in nearly 30 entries. The winner of this year’s “406 MHz Beacon Awareness Day” was Ted Sensenbrenner, from Annapolis, Maryland.
On July 16, 2015, the NSBC joined the U.S. Coast Guard, NOAA, and NASA to showcase life-saving rescue operations and technology like EPIRBs to the media. The NSBC was on-hand to promote its Saved by the Beacon campaign and increase awareness of 406 MHz emergency beacons.
Specifically, Saved by the Beacon emphasizes the difference between the use of EPIRBs (Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacons) for one’s boat versus PLBs (Personal Locator Beacons) for one’s life jacket. The campaign also compares the benefits of beacons to other commonly used mariner’s communications devices such as VHF-FM (DSC) radios, GPS trackers and cellphones.
The NSBC is keeping the conversation going on Twitter @SafeBoatCouncil using #SavedbytheBeacon. To learn more about this campaign and how you can implement the free resources the NSBC has available to reach boaters in your community, visit www.SavedbytheBeacon.com.
ACR Electronics receives Horizon Award
The National Safe Boating Council (NSBC) announced Sustaining Member ACR Electronics Inc. (ACR) as recipient of the 2015 Horizon Award. ACR was commended for their support of NSBC’s Saved by the Beacon National Campaign, which is designed to educate recreational boaters about the importance of 406 MHz beacons and how to use them correctly in the case of a boating emergency.
The NSBC’s Horizon Award is presented to individuals and organizations whose vision for the advancement of safer boating sees beyond the horizon to the next level of boating safety development. The actual award is a brass mariner’s telescope like those used aboard ships by the early mariners to scan the waters horizon.
“Working on the Saved by the Beacon campaign with the NSBC, a leading organization in recreational boating safety, was professionally rewarding. Knowing the impact that the Saved by the Beacon message will carry has been personally rewarding,” shared Nichole Kalil, media specialist at ACR Electronics.