DIGITAL SELECTIVE CALLING (DSC)
Meetings during 2015 between the service providers of the Coastal Radio Station Structures and SAMSA Officials, brought to light a delayed process as tabled by the Coastal Radio Service. Reasons for this delay are partly due to Environmental Impact Studies that is in the process of being approved and the supply and installation of the equipment for DSC. This resulted in the declaration of sea area A1 (VHF DSC Channel 70 watch keeping) being further delayed. (Initial implementation date was 1 July 2015, postponed to 1 January 2016 (see SAMSA Marine notice of 2015). The implementation is anticipated to be on 1 January 2017.
This does not affect the provisions of Marine Notice 6 of 2015 regarding the implementation of VHF in place of 29 MHz as safety equipment. In effect this still means that at the first safety survey after 1 January 2016, of Category D, C and B small craft as stipulated in the NSVSR 2007 as amended, a 29 MHz will no longer be appropriate as part of the safety equipment stipulated in the annex to the NSVSR 2007 regulations.
However the requirement for DSC functionality is temporarily put on hold until 1 January 2017 to enable the Coastal Radio Service to upgrade the complete structure to VHF DSC on channel 70.
Radio Telephony Watch-keeping on 2182 kHz will be maintained until 1 January 2017, by the Coastal Radio Service.
SHORT RANGE CERTIFICATE EXAMINATIONS (SRC).
Restricted Radiotelephone Operators Certificates (Marine) and (Marine – VHF ONLY) are valid for voice communications only. To prevent unauthorized uses of DSC Enabled Marine VHF radios on the anticipated date of 1 January 2017 and taking into consideration the large number of holders of these certificates, the examination for SRC and SRC Conversions should be under-taken urgently. These courses and examinations are available at a number of accredited institutions.
MARITIME MOBILE SERVICE IDENTITY (MMSI) NUMBERS.
Maritime Mobile Service Identity Numbers may be applied for at ICASA, Cape Town. For these numbers to be issued for DSC enabled VHF Marine Radios, a SRC or Interim SRC should be submitted. Aeronautical Restricted Radiotelephone Operator’s Certificates is not applicable to the Maritime VHF radio operations.