The BBC News Magazine has an interesting look at changes in distress communications in the article Save our SOS. It notes it’s been 100 years since “SOS” became the standard signal for ships in distress. The article outlines how “SOS” came into being and how it has been used during the last 100 years. “Digital Selective Calling”, which automates sending the distress call along with position information, and “999” on satellite phones, have largely replaced SOS.
The article notes, however, that there are still uses for SOS.
“The days of morse have long gone,” said Andrew Mahood, a Coastguard watch manager. “Morse can still be used if a person’s on a boat and the radio’s not working; then they will use the good old Mk I torch.”
Comments to the article are interesting. Some people noted that SOS has value in providing a way for people everywhere to indicate an emergency situation.
Doug Lung is one of America's foremost authorities on broadcast RF technology. He has been with NBC since 1985 and is currently vice president of broadcast technology for NBC/Telemundo stations.
Future US's leading brands bring the most important, up-to-date information right to your inbox
Thank you for signing up to TV Tech. You will receive a verification email shortly.
There was a problem. Please refresh the page and try again.