Help is at hand with Radio Rescue

Martin Howells, National Commissioner, Radio Rescue Emergency Communications Incorporated.

 

YOUR 4WD has bogged in the bush.

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There’s no phone reception and daylight is fast fading.

A terrifying prospect.

Suddenly a friendly voice crackles over the Citizen Band radio in response to your emergency call, asking your whereabouts and offering aid.

Radio Rescue Emergency Communications Incorporated is a not-for-profit self-funded organisation monitoring emergency Citizen Band Radio channels and relaying information to the relevant authorities.

Established in 2019 after the closure of several other volunteer rescue organisations, Radio Rescue Emergency Communications is staffed by volunteers with many years of experience in rescue and radiocommunications.

Seven volunteers monitor emergency channels in the Hawks Nest and Tea Gardens area alone.

“We are only a small organisation,” said Walter Searles, NSW Team Leader of Radio Rescue Emergency Communications Incorporated.

“But we are building up.”

The organisation also educates the public in the correct use of Citizen Band radio.

With the greater availability of “licence-free” UHF radio sets selling for as cheaply as $20, members of the public are often unaware that there are federal laws governing the use of CB radios, and that these sets are in fact CB radios and they are subject to these laws.

Channels five and 35 on the UHF band, and channel nine on the 27MHz or High Frequency (HF) band are allocated emergency channels and must be kept clear for life-threatening situations.

Yet many users who are unaware of this rule often use the channel to chat or muck around, which then clogs up the channel for emergencies.

Penalties for using an emergency channel for non-emergency situations can include a maximum of two years’ imprisonment or a fine of up to $165,000.

New to the Tea Gardens and Hawks Nest area, Radio Rescue Emergency Communications Incorporated aims to establish an emergency 4WD recovery service.

Beachgoers who bog their vehicle or find that their engine has overheated from too much beach fun can contact Radio Rescue on the emergency channel and ask for assistance.

To find out more about Radio Rescue Emergency Communications Incorporated, visit radiorescue.org.au or facebook.com/radiorescue.

 

BY Alice HENNEN

 

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