Trip Safety—Personal Locator Beacon

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English PDF: 1780 KB

Number: D13/2018

Date: 26 March 2018

Relevant: Christmas Island

Topic: Personal Locator Beacons Available for Loan

Effective from today, Personal Locator Beacons (PLBs) will now be available for loan from the Australian Federal Police Station at 37 Gaze Road, Settlement instead of the Christmas Island Visitor’s Centre as previously announced earlier this year (Community Bulletin D05/2018).

PLBs are designed to be carried by bushwalkers or solo adventurers and are activated in the event of an emergency when immediate search and rescue assistance is required. When activated, a PLB will connect to the Cospas-Sarsat satellite network which alerts the Australian Joint Rescue Coordination Centre (JRCC) of the user's GPS location. The JRCC then immediately notify local Police so that search and rescue activities can commence.

The devices are waterproof to 15m and include a floatation pouch. Weighing approximately 100g and measuring around the size of a large matchbox, they can easily be clipped to a backpack or belt without impeding the user. When activated, they will continue to broadcast the user's location for up to 24 hours.

It is recommended that any person exploring the National Park, or in areas of no mobile phone reception, carries a PLB to alert authorities in the event of a serious emergency. Carrying a PLB does not negate the requirement for trip planning, which should always include informing someone of your intentions and your expected time of return.

Providing PLBs to tourist and community members is a joint initiative of the Indian Ocean Territories Administration, the Australian Federal Police and the Christmas Island Tourism Association to improve public safety on island.

Ten PLBs are available for loan at no cost. Visitors and community members wishing to borrow a PLB can do so by phoning police on 08 9164 8444 between 8:00am and 4:00pm, 7 days a week, to arrange a suitable time for collection. Please note that photographic ID will be required.

Further information about the PLBs is available: see PDF: 252 KB.

Laga Van Beek
Indian Ocean Territories Administration