Thursday, 29 August 2013

US Coastguard cease MF DSC and R/T

I noticed in this month's Radio User mag that the US Coastguard are ending their 2MHz MF watchkeeping. The requirement for a continuous 2182kHz R/T watch has been gone for many years, but most administrations have at least kept the capability. What I find odd is that the USCG have withdrawn the 2MHz DSC service too.!documentDetail;D=USCG-2013-0521-0001

Quoting from the last document...

"a detailed review of several Coast Guard MF sites revealed significant antenna ground deterioration and infrastructure support degradation, leaving the Coast Guard at risk for not being able to receive or respond to maritime distress calls on 2182 kHz or 2187.5 kHz, and not being able to transmit effectively on 2670 kHz. Early last year, as a result of physical site surveys, the Coast Guard confirmed the significant site deterioration and, therefore, the unreliability of receiving MF distress transmissions at many locations."

So the fear of having such poor equipment that they may not be able to receive or respond means that they take the step to rip it all out, and therefore guarantee that they won't be able to.

It looks like I've logged my last 2187.5kHz DSC transmissions from:

 003669991  COMMSTA Boston USA
 003669997  COMMSTA Miami USA
 003669998  COMMSTA New Orleans USA 
 003669995  COMMSTA Portsmouth USA 
 003669931 USCG New Haven USA
 003669999 USCG Stns Group Call USA

Farewell USA on 2MHz. 

At least we might still have St. John's, Placentia, Sydney Harbour from the East coast of Canada to listen to on 2MHz SSB this winter - or are they thinking the same thing as the USA? Thinking about it, I don't recall ever receiving any 2MHz DSC from a Canadian Coast Station.

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