1 Nov 2014

Reminder about disposing of beacons

5:12 pm on 1 November 2014

Maritime New Zealand is reminding people with outdated emergency distress beacons to make sure they are disposed of properly.

A four hour search involving a rescue helicopter was triggered last week by what turned out to be an obsolete distress beacon transmitting in error from a dilapidated yacht near Picton.

Beacons operating on the frequency stopped being monitored in February 2009.

But search coordinator Mike Roberts said aircraft passing overhead could still pick up their signals - and that's what sparked the search.

He said the battery needed to be disconnected and the beacon disposed of correctly.