Sunday, February 25

New ACR PLB with More Built-in Safety

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The Electronics Tent is always one of the most popular spots at the Fort Lauderdale show. And cruising boat owners usually crowd around the ACR exhibit. This year ACR is showing its new Return Link Service for its most popular ResQLink Personal Locator Beacon that gives cruising boat owners an additional level of safety.

The Return Link Service (RLS) provides a clear message confirming that U.S. boaters are connected to the international Cospas-Sarsat satellite system. The confirmation means that the boater’s distress message and GPS location have reached the international network.

The ResQLink View RLS ($449.95), pictured at top, confirms the connection on its digital display screen, while the ResQLink 410 RLS ($429.95) has a confirmation light.

The new PLBs are small, lightweight and buoyant, and they require no subscriptions. They have global coverage and the display provides status updates. The batteries have a five-year lifespan, and provide 28 hours of operational life once deployed.

ResQLink has three levels of integrated signal technology: GPS positioning, a powerful 406 MHz signal, and 121.5 MHz homing capability to quickly and accurately relay your position to a worldwide network of search-and-rescue satellites. A built-in strobe and infrared strobe help in nighttime or other low-visibility rescues.

You use it by deploying the antenna and pressing the on button. The beacon then will confirm when your distress signal, with your location, has been received, and will guide rescuers to within 100 yards or less of your position. The display provides live beacon status and your GPS coordinates throughout the rescue process.

Even if you never have to use them, PLBs provide some intangible peace of mind for cruising boat owners and their crews. They generally are a relatively inexpensive but potentially life-saving piece of equipment that each crew member can put in a pocket.  Read more:


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