406MHz Personal Locator Beacons have the same transmission power, alerting and location ability as 406MHz EPIRBs and the units are effective world-wide, on land, air or sea. The main difference is that PLBs are smaller than EPIRBs; this allows them to be carried in a pocket or on a belt.
However please be aware of PLB’s limitations when compared to EPIRBs:
• The units are not designed to operate while floating. The PLB must be supported out of the water with the antenna vertical.
• The operating time is shorter: typically 24hrs (PLB) instead of 48hrs (EPIRBs).
• The PLB cannot activate automatically so the user must be conscious and able to erect the antenna and switch on the device.
• The PLB must be secured at all times to prevent accidental loss.
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