An Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacon (EPIRB) is a distress beacon used by ships, aircraft, and people in distress to alert rescue authorities and other vessels in the area of their location.
The EPIRB is designed to transmit a radio signal on a specific frequency, typically 406 MHz/ 121.f MHz, to a network of search and rescue satellites orbiting the earth.
In the event of an emergency, activating the EPIRB triggers a sequence of events. The EPIRB will transmit a signal to the satellite network, which will relay the distress signal to rescue authorities.
The signal will also contain the beacon’s unique identification number, which allows rescue authorities to identify the vessel or person in distress.
EPIRBs are required by international maritime regulations to be installed on all commercial vessels and are strongly recommended for all recreational vessels that travel offshore.
There are two types of EPIRBs: Category I and Category II. Category I EPIRBs are designed to automatically float free from a sinking vessel and activate upon contact with water. Category II EPIRBs are manually activated and are typically used on recreational vessels.
EPIRBs are an essential piece of safety equipment and are designed to provide a reliable and effective means of alerting rescue authorities in an emergency.
It is important to regularly test and maintain the EPIRB to ensure it is functioning correctly and is ready to use in an emergency.