It should be noted that no provision of this handbook, the International Radio Regulations, or the Radiocommunications Act 1992, prevents the use by a vessel in distress of any means at its disposal to attract attention, make known its position and obtain help.
Similarly, no provision of this handbook, the International Radio Regulations, or the Radiocommunications Act 1992, prevents the use by vessels engaged in search and rescue operations of any means at their disposal to assist a vessel in distress.
This edition of the Marine Radio Operators Handbook reflects the new arrangements for maritime communication stations from 1 July 2002. These arrangements include substantial changes to the frequencies monitored by these stations for distress and safety, and changed requirements for ships wishing to participate in the AUSREP reporting system.
It also contains information about the Global Maritime Distress and Safety System (GMDSS) marine communications techniques which are available for use by small vessels in Australia. The system uses advanced technology and automation to ensure that search and rescue authorities, as well as ships in the vicinity of an emergency, are alerted reliably and rapidly. Both satellite and terrestrial communications form essential components of the GMDSS.
The Australian Maritime College acknowledges the contribution of ACMA, Australian Maritime Safety Authority (AMSA), the Bureau of Meteorology, Telstra, and the Governments of the States and the Northern Territory in the preparation of this Handbook.