A new website to inform, advise and update mariners about AIS (Automatic Identification System) and the new USCG (United States Coast Guard) AIS mandate has been launched at www.aismandate.com.
The comprehensive resource has been established to help commercial vessel owners, operators and installers, as well as recreational boat owners, understand the basics of AIS, the potential benefits, the different products available and how to comply with upcoming mandates.
Created and managed by global leader in safety and survival technologies ACR Electronics, a Drew Marine Company, the dedicated AIS website focuses on the USCG AIS mandate which will be enforced in March 2016.
As the deadline approaches for commercial vessels to meet requirements to install an appropriate AIS system, owners and operators can find out if they are covered by the new rule and whether they need a Class A or Class B AIS device in order to operate legally in US waters.
The user-friendly site also features frequently asked questions, answers about AIS and the new mandate, plus useful links, explanative graphics, technical information about type-approved transceivers, installation advice and the latest global news as it relates to AIS.
The new USCG AIS mandate affects US and foreign-flag vessels operating in US waters and has been introduced to enhance the safety and security of maritime transportation.
Failure to comply could result in a large fine. www.aismandate.com aims to help users in the commercial industry to understand AIS and the different options available as they research and plan to equip their vessels for future years. The rule means vessels such as commercial self-propelled vessels of 65 feet or more in length, towing vessels of 26 feet or more, passenger vessels certificated to carry more than 150 passengers, vessels that move or carry hazardous cargo and vessels that engage in dredging in or near a commercial channel will all require a Class A AIS device.
Meanwhile, certain vessels, including fishing and small passenger vessels that operate outside US Vessel Traffic Service (VTS) Areas, can use the less expensive Class B device.
The website also provides information for recreational boaters who are interested in learning more about AIS technology and how it can both improve their own safety and provide opportunities to help fellow boaters in distress.
By sending and receiving wireless data to and from nearby AIS-equipped vessels including the vessel’s name, position, course or speed over the ground, heading and rate of turn, an AIS device will ensure boaters can see and be seen on the water, enabling them to keep clear of local maritime traffic and increasing navigational safety, particularly in areas of high congestion or when visibility is poor.
Further expanding its portfolio of maritime survival products with the launch of the AISLink CA1 and AISLink CB1, ACR has entered the AIS market to both serve the needs of customers with the upcoming mandates and provide additional levels of navigational safety to mariners.