After spending several months testing the broadcast of weather information from the Irish Navtex site at Malin Head, involving he UK’s Maritime and Coastguard Agency, the Irish Coastguard and the UK Met Office, which provided weather forecasts and outlooks, a full service will come into operation on 1 April, 2010.
Steve Huxley, Search and Rescue Communications Manager at Falmouth Coastguard says: “The UK has very much appreciated the help given by the Irish Coastguard in using their Navtex site to fill in gaps of coverage which could not be provided by the UK infrastructure over North West Scotland.
The following inshore waters sea areas will be broadcast at 0000 then every 4 hrs. Mariners should select B1 Character A on 490 kHz .
Areas covered by Malin Head Navtex on 490 kHz:
• Lough Foyle to Carlingford Lough
• Mull of Galloway to Mull of Kintyre, including the Firth of Clyde & North Channel
• Mull of Kintyre to Ardnamurchan Point;
• The Minch
• Ardnamurchan Point to Cape Wrath
NAVTEX (Navigational Telex) is an international automated medium frequency direct-printing service for delivery of navigational and meteorological warnings and forecasts, as well as urgent marine safety information to ships. It was developed to provide a low-cost, simple, and automated means of receiving this information aboard ships at sea within approximately 370 km (200 nautical miles) of shore.