Does your radio work ?

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marisca
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Does your radio work ?

Postby marisca » Sun Jun 27, 2010 10:37 am

I used to be amused by the posts on TOP complaining about "radio checks" in the Solent but the virus has spread to pandemic proportions on the Clyde and has even broken out on the Forth. I have even heard denizens of this forum doing it - you know who you are!

I have called the CG for a radio check once in my sailing existence and that was after raising the mast at Grangemouth, otherwise I occasionally check with my handheld, but usually just assume that if it worked the last time, is receiving ok and I haven't been fiddling with the wiring or anything, it will work. Am I in breach of some Elfin-safety code or leaving myself open to huge damages for negligence by not calling the CG every time I turn the thing on? Or maybe my paranoia level is unusually low? I don't set off my flares to make sure they work, don't pull the string on my liferaft or lifejackets just in case, don't dunk the safety lights, don't invert the dan-buoy every time I go out - I haven't even tested my Lidl's fire extinguishers. Should I dial 999 with my mobile phone every day just to check?

I am trying to think up some form of discouragement for the radio-checkers but, apart from abusing the vhf myself while doing it, am at a loss. Any ideas?

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Re: Does your radio work ?

Postby bosun higgs » Sun Jun 27, 2010 4:18 pm

Got to say the radio checks don't bother me. I never switch the radio on unless I want to call someone or listen to the weather.

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marisca
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Re: Does your radio work ?

Postby marisca » Sun Jun 27, 2010 6:25 pm

Yeah, but ..... I have this daft idea that listening to 16 and port control is the right thing to do. Any more of this "radio check, please" rubbish and I could well be joining you with the off knob.

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Silkie
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Re: Does your radio work ?

Postby Silkie » Sun Jun 27, 2010 6:36 pm

I'm daft like that too. I'm pretty sure that most people are.
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Fingal
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Re: Does your radio work ?

Postby Fingal » Mon Jun 28, 2010 8:14 am

I''m another daftie. I do find that in the FoF listening to the FP traffic control gives useful advance knowledge that large ships are about to appear around the dog-leg at the Forth Bridge, ditto 16. I call the CG at the beginning of the season to confirm that the thing is working correctly; a conversation with a CG watch officer some years ago suggested that they welcome radio checks at appropriate times, as each call is logged and helps to maintain the case for staffing levels.
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bosun higgs
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Re: Does your radio work ?

Postby bosun higgs » Mon Jun 28, 2010 8:41 am

Border Maid wrote:they welcome radio checks at appropriate times, as each call is logged and helps to maintain the case for staffing levels.


Which is a very good reason for never doing it! The cynic in me also wonders whether this is part of the reason that the CG often decide to call out the lifeboat when it's far from clear that it's absolutely necessary. In other words is it really " better safe than sorry" or "better call out than redundant"?

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Re: Does your radio work ?

Postby Alcyone » Mon Jun 28, 2010 4:19 pm

marisca wrote:Yeah, but ..... I have this daft idea that listening to 16 and port control is the right thing to do. Any more of this "radio check, please" rubbish and I could well be joining you with the off knob.



I agree with you. Except the bit about calling BH a knob.

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Re: Does your radio work ?

Postby Rowana » Mon Jun 28, 2010 4:23 pm

In Peterhead, it is a requirement to call the harbour control to get permission to leave or enter the marina, so my radio is checked twice every time I go out.

Other than that, I never use the thing except for getting the CG weather reports.
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Re: Does your radio work ?

Postby lady_stormrider » Mon Jun 28, 2010 7:45 pm

We also just listen to the Weather information coming out of Crosby, Liverpool - but I'm not sure about the texture of the conditions. They keep talking about "Weather - fur".

Skipper has now got a bee in his captain's hat about DSC functions on his radio. The Bosun's Locker* is now being turned over for the instruction booklet.

*He turfed out his youngest from the front bedroom to make a storage room for all things boaty.
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Fingal
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Re: Does your radio work ?

Postby Fingal » Mon Jun 28, 2010 8:05 pm

bosun higgs wrote:
Border Maid wrote:they welcome radio checks at appropriate times, as each call is logged and helps to maintain the case for staffing levels.


Which is a very good reason for never doing it! The cynic in me also wonders whether this is part of the reason that the CG often decide to call out the lifeboat when it's far from clear that it's absolutely necessary. In other words is it really " better safe than sorry" or "better call out than redundant"?

I'm not sure that the logic stands up. If nobody calls the CG except in distress doesn't that make a case for even further 'efficiency savings' with more automation and fewer centres still? I'm not defending obsessive radio-checking, simply making a case for acting rationally. The thing about callouts could be seen as analogous to Pascal's Wager. Better to call out the LB on some occasions when it's not actually needed, than set the test for callout at a level that someone dies needlessly. Or were you just having a laugh/being provocative/adopting an anti-trade union posture?
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bosun higgs
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Re: Does your radio work ?

Postby bosun higgs » Mon Jun 28, 2010 10:24 pm

Partly anti union but mostly out of personal experience of what makes organisations tick.

Any organisation has two sets of objectives at least - the first ones being the official reason for it's existence ( making cars, running the busses) and the second set being internal management objectives all related to personal survival and prospering and promotion etc. A hospital might officially exist to cure your ailments but it's employees are interested also in pay / job security / promotion prospects and so on. And that includes unions who's interest up to a point is in fomenting dissension as a recruiting tool.

Thats why you get patients left on trollies in hospitals ( keeps the admission times in target) or police investigating burglaries and ignoring other crimes. I dont think the MCA is above this sort of thing. Do you?

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marisca
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Re: Does your radio work ?

Postby marisca » Mon Jun 28, 2010 10:48 pm

Ah, it all becomes clear! The radio-checkers are in fact lackeys of socialist ideology attempting to maintain employment in the public sector in direct conflict with the newly - I daren't say democratically - elected government. And I thought they were just annoying gits who had to play with the knobs and buttons of their toys so they could hear their boat's name on the radio.

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Re: Does your radio work ?

Postby MrMcP » Tue Jun 29, 2010 8:34 am

marisca wrote:Ah, it all becomes clear! The radio-checkers are in fact lackeys of socialist ideology attempting to maintain employment in the public sector

Tommy Sheridan should get a boat then.....would maybe get him off Buchanan Street when it comes to election time/shouting time and give me some peace in the office.

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Alcyone
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Re: Does your radio work ?

Postby Alcyone » Tue Jun 29, 2010 8:51 am

I probably check once a year - most of the time simple use tells me it's working. I don't have a problem with it, though. I check to see my engine is pumping water well. I check that my batteries are charging. I check my bilges are dry (rare). And so on.

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Fingal
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Re: Does your radio work ?

Postby Fingal » Tue Jun 29, 2010 1:30 pm

marisca wrote:Ah, it all becomes clear! The radio-checkers are in fact lackeys of socialist ideology attempting to maintain employment in the public sector in direct conflict with the newly - I daren't say democratically - elected government. And I thought they were just annoying gits who had to play with the knobs and buttons of their toys so they could hear their boat's name on the radio.


You've been listening in when I have ben doing my check haven't you?
"FC,FC, this is BM, BM, requesting a comradely radio check and party line on 16 please. Over."
"BM this is FC, good morning comrade, you are loud, clear and ideologically sound. Over"
"FC this is BM, thanks for that. Please convey fraternal greetings to your Trade Union comrades in the name of the PSRPE*. Long live the revolution. Tories out; BM out."

*People's Socialist Republic of Port Edgar
Ken
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