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Electronic Code of Federal Regulations

e-CFR Data is current as of July 23, 2014

Title 47: Telecommunication
PART 80—STATIONS IN THE MARITIME SERVICES
Subpart W—Global Maritime Distress and Safety System (GMDSS)


§80.1125   Search and rescue coordinating communications.

(a) The distress signal consists of the word MAYDAY, pronounced in radiotelephony as the French expression “M'aider”. For distress traffic by radiotelephony, when establishing communications, calls must be prefixed by the distress signal MAYDAY.

(b) Error correction techniques, in accordance with ITU-R M.625-3 (incorporated by reference, see §80.7), as specified in §80.1101, must be used for distress traffic by direct-printing telegraphy. All messages must be preceded by at least one carriage return, a line feed signal, a letter shift signal and the distress signal MAYDAY.

(c) Distress communications by direct-printing telegraphy should be in the ARQ mode when ships are communicating directly to the Coast Guard or other coast stations on channels which they normally guard. Other distress communications, including those on simplex channels provided for that purpose, should be in the broadcast forward error correction mode. The ARQ mode may subsequently be used when it is advantageous to do so.

(d) The Rescue Coordination Center responsible for controlling a search and rescue operation will also coordinate the distress traffic relating to the incident or may appoint another station to do so.

(e) The Rescue Coordination Center coordinating distress traffic, the unit coordinating search and rescue operations, or the coast station involved may impose silence on stations which interfere with that traffic. This instruction may be addressed to all stations or to one station only, according to circumstances. In either case, the following will be used:

(1) In radiotelephony, the signal SEELONCE MAYDAY, pronounced as the French expression “silence, m'aider”;

(2) In narrow-band direct-printing telegraphy normally using forward-error correcting mode, the signal SILENCE MAYDAY. However, the ARQ mode may be used when it is advantageous to do so.

(f) Until they receive the message indicating that normal working may be resumed (see paragraph (h) of this section), all stations which are aware of the distress traffic, and which are not taking part in it, and which are not in distress, are forbidden to transmit on the frequencies in which the distress traffic is taking place.

(g) Stations following distress traffic that are able to continue normal service may do so when the distress traffic is well established and on condition that it observes the provisions of paragraph (f) of this section and that it does not interfere with distress traffic.

(h) When distress traffic has ceased on frequencies which have been used for distress traffic, the Rescue Coordination Center controlling a search and rescue operation must initiate a message for transmission on these frequencies indicating that distress traffic has finished.

(i) In radiotelephony, the message referred to in paragraph (h) of this section consists of:

(1) The distress signal MAYDAY;

(2) The call “Hello all stations” or CQ (spoken as CHARLIE QUEBEC) spoken three times;

(3) The words THIS IS (or DE spoken as DELTA ECHO in the case of language difficulties);

(4) The call sign or other identification of the station sending the message;

(5) The time when the distress situation has ceased;

(6) The name and call sign of the mobile station which was in distress;

(7) The words SEELONCE FEENEE pronounced as the French words “silence fini”

(j) In direct-printing telegraphy, the message referred to in paragraph (h) of this section consists of:

(1) The distress signal MAYDAY;

(2) The call CQ;

(3) The word DE;

(4) The call sign or other identification of the station sending the message;

(5) The time when distress situation has ceased;

(6) The name and call sign of the mobile station which was in distress; and

(7) The words SILENCE FINI.

[57 FR 9065, Mar. 16, 1992, as amended at 68 FR 46981, Aug. 7, 2003; 73 FR 4492, Jan. 25, 2008; 76 FR 67618, Nov. 2, 2011]



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