QUEENSLAND’S iconic helicopter rescue service, RACQ CareFlight, is urging motorists, tourists and workers travelling in remote areas of Queensland to carry a Personal Locator Beacon (PLB), as it could save their lives.
RACQ CareFlight Chief Aircrewman Brian Guthrie said he had seen the benefits of a PLB first hand in locations with little or no mobile reception.
“We rescued a group of people during the Roma floods two years ago,” Mr Guthrie said.
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“They had a PLB and we were able to very quickly hone in on their exact location.
“Every minute counts in an emergency and a PLB can make all the difference.”
When activated, the Personal Locator Beacon sends a signal to the Australian Maritime Safety Authority’s (AMSA) Rescue Coordination Centre (RCC Australia), which organises for a rescue service such as RACQ CareFlight to respond.
RACQ spokesperson Niki Kormendy said PLBs would give motorists or motorcyclists on road trips reassurance that help would be on hand if needed, regardless of local mobile network coverage.
“Preparation for long road trips – particularly those through remote areas – is essential,” Ms Kormendy said.
“In addition to preparing your vehicle, planning your route and rest stops and checking road conditions and weather reports, motorists should take a PLB in case of an emergency.
“There would be nothing worse than having a crash and not being able to seek help due to lack of mobile phone reception.”