Mariners now have the option to use another type of safety communications system after the Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) implemented it.
International law requires mariners to have a Global Maritime Distress and Safety System (GMDSS) terminal capable of receiving Maritime Safety Information (MSI), such as navigational and meteorological warnings, throughout their voyage.
This includes when vessels move outside the range of services known as NAVTEX which send safety updates automatically via radio. Satellite services recognised by the International Maritime Organisation (IMO) are used beyond the range of NAVTEX.
Following a successful trial period, MSI can be provided by either the existing Inmarsat SafetyNET or the new Iridium SafetyCast satellite services in NAVAREA I and METAREA I – the maritime geographic area coordinated by the United Kingdom.
Further information :