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Boat Sinks with 9, possible hoax radio call

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Mozilla

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On Sunday nite the US Coast Guard recieved a distress call involving a 33 foot boat sinking off the Boynton Beach inlet, FL with 5 adults and 4 children. The last contact was supposedly with the man who had a handheld radio and was in the water with everyone. The Coast Guard was on the radio for almost an hour with the caller. A search since Sunday, thru yesterday has revealed nothing. Its is now believed that the call may have been a hoax. This is the site for the USCG info and it includes soundfile bits of the call, and also public updates. http://www.d7publicaffairs.

http://www.palmbeachpost.com/pbccentral/content/local_news/epaper/2006/06/13/m1a_missing_0613.html

A search of marinas, and parking areas revealed no vehicles or trailers and a sound analyis of the tape is not showing any background noise such as voices or water sound etc.
Several agencies and multiple boats and Helos along with C-130's where involved.
 

N4UYV_Al

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And to think, some hams probably could have located the origin of the signal in less that time...Standing on the outer beach with an HT & 3 element yagi would have taken all but 10 seconds to determine if the signal actual originated off the coast...
 

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They probably kept the yuppy on the radio that long for the purpose of DF'ing him.
 

Mozilla

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Uscg Df

N4UYV_Al said:
And to think, some hams probably could have located the origin of the signal in less that time...Standing on the outer beach with an HT & 3 element yagi would have taken all but 10 seconds to determine if the signal actual originated off the coast...
Well, under ideal conditions, it might occur, however with notification and response time and since the individual was transmiting in short segments, and there was less than an hour between the intial call and when he dropped of, it wasn't going to happen. The land based DF system was not working, and by the time the Vessel and helo units which do have DF capability got in the area nothing was transmitting. However these guys tend to repeat these types of actions, so hopefully the next time around, he'll get bagged.
 

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USCG is very DF literate. All boats large enough to have the DF array are equipped and all USCG Stations have DF gear. They'd blow the average ham trying to DF right out of the water (no pun intended).
 

Mozilla

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Df

Most definitely DF literate... hams would give their left nut to have some of the gear on the boats or the helos. Also they do train on it. The problems lies usually in some of the land base stuff either being older, being replaced or tied in on a less than reliable infrastrucuture. But much of it is or has been upgraded, but there are still some problems.
And there are two agencies down here that help out 6-9 times a year with pirate stations, and jamming or interference, they're pretty good.
 

N4UYV_Al

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Hmmm

http://www.gdc4s.com/news/detail.cfm?prid=201

Sorry guys, I still think it comes down to the basics of direction finding gear of a radio & a handheld beam antenna or a couple of base stations using triangulation for a general area over millions of dollars of sofisticated digital gear on board ships & helos but that's just my opinion...Hell, their gear was probably invented by a ham ;)
 
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Mozilla

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DF Gear

I am sure that there where some hams mixed in the engineering staff and some that weren't . But the realitieis here are that if your offshore and you are using an EPIRB or radio, you'd be suprised at the accuracy and speed at which they can find these...but as stated again, there where no transmissions by the time they got on scene, so nothing to work with and the land based system is another story ....there have been past incidents in the Carolinas and I belive Maryland. And as the article shows some upgrades are on the way.

I'll have to get a picture, but the newer units are not only for radio, but also for the diffirent class EPIRB devices in VHF , and UHF .....

By the way Civil Air Patrol has some really decent trackers.....
 

Mozilla

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Got Him

Well, they indicted a 45 year old male yesterday for making the hoax calls. After listening to the hoax mayday call the Coast Guard got calls from someone who recognized the voice.
He has been arrested on Federal Charges and also faces a bill of over $347,000 if convicted for the cost of the search.
Also here is shot of one type of DF unit, from the control head view
 

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N4UYV_Al

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Thanks for letting us know the outcome Moz...Now, they should make him spit-shine every Coast Guard vessel & airship in the fleet from Virginia to Key West...lol
 

Mozilla

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Subject sentenced

The individual was sentenced yesterday to 30 monthes Federal time and ordered to pay $347,000 to cover the costs of the search.
 

OpSec

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Mozilla said:
The individual was sentenced yesterday to 30 monthes Federal time and ordered to pay $347,000 to cover the costs of the search.
Sweet. It's good that he's being made an example.
 
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