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Y1-03-0241A 12
11. Preventing false alerts
A false alert is any activation of the beacon, intentional or otherwise,
that does not result from a situation of grave and imminent danger.
Be sure to do the following to help minimize false alerts:
Register your beacon. This does not reduce false alert rates;
however, when the beacon is properly registered, the situation can
usually be resolved with a phone call.
Be careful with whom you leave your beacon. Make sure that
they know how to use it, and that they understand the ramifications
of causing a false alert. A lot of false alerts are generated by curious
individuals. If you notice the beacon is flashing the red or green LED
and “beeping” periodically on its own, this likely means it has
accidentally been activated and needs to be shut off and reported.
Do not stow beacon while other gear is in contact with the
The Cospas-Sarsat satellites detect distress beacon transmissions
immediately and locate the transmission within a few minutes of beacon
NOTE: If you report a false alert and the authorities have not received
the signal, do not be concerned. This may mean that you were able to
deactivate the beacon before transmitting the signal.
12. False alert
A false alert must be reported to the search and rescue authorities.
False alerts in the US that are rectified must be reported to the US Air
Force Rescue Coordination Center (AFRCC) to let them know that the
situation has been corrected and everything is fine. Responsibly
reporting these events to the AFRCC or your proper authority will not
incur a penalty, but deliberate misuse or not notifying the proper
authority may incur a severe penalty.
Should there be a false alert for any reason, it
be reported to the
nearest search and rescue authorities. The information that should be
reported includes:
The PLB 15-digit Unique Identifier Number (UIN)
Time and date
Duration and cause of activation
Location of beacon at the time of activation
To report false alert in the United States,
contact the AFRCC:
United States Air Force Rescue Tel: 1-800-851-3051
Coordination Center (AFRCC)