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Subelement B
Communications Procedures
Section 12
GMDSS
What is the fundamental concept of the GMDSS?
  • It is intended to automate and improve existing digital selective calling procedures and techniques.
  • It is intended to provide more effective but lower cost commercial communications.
  • It is intended to provide compulsory vessels with a collision avoidance system when they are operating in waters that are also occupied by non-compulsory vessels.
  • Correct Answer
    It is intended to automate and improve emergency communications in the maritime industry.

What is the fundamental concept of the GMDSS?

(D). It is intended to automate and improve emergency communications in the maritime industry.

GMDSS, adopted by the maritime nations, uses a combination of satellite and terrestrial radio services for disaster declaration and search and rescue coordinated efforts.

Before its implementation, ships handled distress communications and response. Now, the communication involves Rescue Coordination Centers located on shores.

Please see FCC site article on Global Maritime Distress and Safety System (GMDSS)

For more info, please see Wikipedia's article on Global Maritime Distress and Safety System

Also, USCG National Center of Expertise pdf document on GLOBAL MARITIME DISTRESS AND SAFETY SYSTEM

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The primary purpose of the GMDSS is to:
  • Allow more effective control of SAR situations by vessels.
  • Provide additional shipboard systems for more effective company communications.
  • Correct Answer
    Automate and improve emergency communications for the world’s shipping industry.
  • Provide effective and inexpensive communications.

The primary purpose of the GMDSS is to:

(C). Automate and improve emergency communications for the world’s shipping industry.

The GMDSS (Global Maritime Distress and Safety System) is an emergency communications system used for distressed vessels.

GMDSS, adopted by the maritime nations, uses a combination of satellite and terrestrial radio services for disaster declaration and search and rescue coordinated efforts.

Before its implementation, ships handled distress communications and response. Now, the communication involves Rescue Coordination Centers located on shores.

For more info, please see Wikipedia's article on Global Maritime Distress and Safety System

Also, USCG National Center of Expertise pdf document on GLOBAL MARITIME DISTRESS AND SAFETY SYSTEM

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What is the basic concept of GMDSS?
  • Shoreside authorities and vessels can assist in a coordinated SAR operation with minimum delay.
  • Search and rescue authorities ashore can be alerted to a Distress situation.
  • Shipping in the immediate vicinity of a ship in Distress will be rapidly alerted.
  • Correct Answer
    All of these.

What is the basic concept of GMDSS?

(D). All of these.

The GMDSS (Global Maritime Distress and Safety System) is an emergency communications system used internationally. It is meant to automate and expedite responses to distress signals as well as make SAR operations easier to accomplish.

For more info, please see Wikipedia's article on Global Maritime Distress and Safety System


For extensive GMDSS info, please see Code of Federal Regulations, Title 47 Chapter I Subchapter D Part 80
Subpart W - Global Maritime Distress and Safety System (GMDSS)

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GMDSS is primarily a system based on?
  • Ship-to-ship Distress communications using MF or HF radiotelephony.
  • VHF digital selective calling from ship to shore.
  • Distress, Urgency and Safety communications carried out by the use of narrow-band direct printing telegraphy.
  • Correct Answer
    The linking of search and rescue authorities ashore with shipping in the immediate vicinity of a ship in Distress or in need of assistance.

GMDSS is primarily a system based on?

(D). The linking of search and rescue authorities ashore with shipping in the immediate vicinity of a ship in Distress or in need of assistance.

The GMDSS is an automated ship to shore system using satellites and digital selective calling technology.

GMDSS, adopted by the maritime nations, uses a combination of satellite and terrestrial radio services for disaster declaration and search and rescue coordinated efforts.

Before its implementation, ships handled distress communications and response. Now, the communication involves Rescue Coordination Centers located on shores.

For more info, please see Wikipedia's article on Global Maritime Distress and Safety System

Also, USCG National Center of Expertise pdf document on GLOBAL MARITIME DISTRESS AND SAFETY SYSTEM

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What is the responsibility of vessels under GMDSS?
  • Vessels over 300 gross tons may be required to render assistance if such assistance does not adversely affect their port schedule.
  • Only that vessel, regardless of size, closest to a vessel in Distress, is required to render assistance.
  • Correct Answer
    Every ship is able to perform those communications functions that are essential for the Safety of the ship itself and of other ships.
  • Vessels operating under GMDSS, outside of areas effectively serviced by shoreside authorities, operating in sea areas A2, and A4 may be required to render assistance in Distress situations.

What is the responsibility of vessels under GMDSS?

(C). Every ship is able to perform those communications functions that are essential for the Safety of the ship itself and of other ships.

According to Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, article on Global Maritime Distress Safety System (GMDSS)

"Ships fitted with GMDSS equipment are safer at sea - and more likely to receive assistance in the event of a distress - because the GMDSS provides for automatic distress alerting and locating when ship's staff do not have time to send out a full distress call. "

"The GMDSS also requires ships to receive broadcasts of maritime safety information which could prevent a distress from happening, and requires ships to carry satellite Emergency Position Indicating Radio Beacons (EPIRBs), which float free from a sinking ship and alert rescue authorities with the ship's identity and location."

Also see Wikipedia article Global Maritime Distress and Safety System

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GMDSS is required for which of the following?
  • All vessels capable of international voyages.
  • Correct Answer
    SOLAS Convention ships of 300 gross tonnage or more.
  • Vessels operating outside of the range of VHF coastal radio stations.
  • Coastal vessels of less than 300 gross tons.

GMDSS is required for which of the following?

(B). SOLAS Convention ships of 300 gross tonnage or more.

Per FCC article on Global Maritime Distress and Safety System (GMDSS)

"The international GMDSS regulations apply to "compulsory" ships including:

  • cargo ships of 300 gross tons and over when traveling on international voyages or in the open sea
  • all passenger ships carrying more than twelve passengers
  • when traveling on international voyages or in the open sea"

According to USCG National Center of Expertise article on GLOBAL MARITIME DISTRESS AND SAFETY SYSTEM (GMDSS) Guide

The Chapter IV of 1974 SOLAS requires ships to have the GMDSS equipment if over 300 gross tons or more. If under 300 gross tons, the ships are not required to be equipment with the GMDSS units.

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