With the Special Regulations now allowing the use of Satellite Phones, care must be taken when deciding what calling system is best for the boat.
Many call options are available for having a Satellite Phone on board and it is important to choose the most suitable for the boat or race.
However, it would be prudent to be aware of the pitfalls of using a prepaid service.
Whilst a prepaid service is beneficial in reducing the cost of a race campaign, there have been stories where the amount of prepaid calls purchased did not cover the call costs required in an emergency situation.
Not only must the costs of the scheds be covered but there must be enough credit available to be calling emergency services, the Organising Authority and other boats as necessary. Pre-Paid credit amounts cannot always be topped up immediately either. Races are generally held on weekends, public holidays and as we all know most emergencies happen in the middle of the night, reducing the ability to purchase more calls and have them credited to the system.
More information on Sat Phones in the Special Regulations can be found here.