If you own or use a VHF marine radio, then it is a legal requirement to have an 'Authority to Operate' license, or to be supervised by someone who does.
The VHF Short Range Certificate course which includes Digital Selective Calling is a 1 Day (8 hour) course and provides you with the relevant qualifications needed to legally operate a VHF radio.
There are several practical reasons for using a VHF as your primary form of safety communication:
- Mobile 'phone networks are unreliable at sea
- You can only can only call one number with a 'phone, and therefore surrounding vessels will be unaware of your circumstances
- Modern DSC VHF radios can transmit position with distress message (when connected to GPS)
- The rescue services can obtain a bearing of VHF signals
- It is HM Coastguard's preferred method of communication.
Course Cost: £85 *
Minimum Age: 12 (However, Certificates awarded to those under 16 will be issued with a postdated 'Valid From Date' for their 16th Birthday)
Courses Dates: Please see our calender
* Please note that there is a further charge, by the RYA for the examination and certification (Currently £60)