Equipped To Survive Foundation, Inc. Equipped To Survive Foundation
Receives Accolades from NBSAC
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October 18, 2004
Gilbert, Arizona
For immediate release

Equipped To Survive Foundation Receives Accolades from
National Boating Safety Advisory Council

NBSAC Presentation
(right to left) Admiral Terry Cross (Vice-Commandant U.S. Coast Guard), Ruth Wood (Boat US Foundation), Doug Ritter (Equipped To Survive Foundation) and Rob Wilcox (West Marine)
At a ceremony conducted on October 12, 2004, Vice-Commandant of the Coast Guard, Vice Admiral Terry Cross, presented to Doug Ritter, Chairman of Equipped To Survive Foundation, a framed copy of the National Boating Safety Advisory Council (NBSAC) resolution commending ETS Foundation, along with sponsors BoatUS Foundation and West Marine, for their combined efforts that identified the deficiencies in GPS performance of McMurdo GPS-enabled 406 MHz emergency beacons and subsequent actions to protect boaters from the deficiencies identified.

Click here to read about the ground breaking testing initiated, developed and conducted by Equipped To Survive Foundation on GPS enabled 406 MHz emergency beacons.

Click here to read the NBSAC resolution. (in Adobe Acrobat (PDF) format - opens a new browser window)
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NBSAC Resolution - Click to read PDF versionDoug Ritter issued the following remarks prepared for delivery at the ceremony:

Admiral Cross, Chairman Muldoon, distinguished members of the Council:

I am honored to accept this award on behalf of the Equipped To Survive Foundation. I would not be standing here were it not for the courageous and very generous support of West Marine and BoatUS Foundation and they well deserve the recognition they have also earned. It is no small matter to invest the tens of thousands of dollars and contribute additional personnel and resources required to perform this sort of evaluation, with an uncertain outcome, and it takes even greater courage to react as West Marine did upon learning the results. But, there is no doubt that the results have given them and the boating community a good return on that investment.

I am especially pleased that both West Marine and Boat US Foundation have stepped up again to help support the follow-up testing we hope to perform this coming January, assuming the beacon manufactures agree to cooperate.

Boaters must have confidence they can rely upon their emergency gear and they deserve to get what they pay for, especially so when they invest significant sums in their safety. The unprecedented reaction to the results of Equipped To Survive Foundation's evaluation speaks volumes about how truly critical this is.

I'd also like to express my deep appreciation to the Coast Guard for inviting me to that first beacon test in Key West where the unexpected problems with GPS acquisition by some beacons we witnessed were first brought to light, even if those disturbing results would not be made public. We would also not be here and the boating public would not be any the wiser, but for that invitation from Commander Paul Steward and his consideration for the unique contributions that the Equipped To Survive Foundation could bring to such testing. While it is a bit ironic that Coast Guard Headquarters was unwilling to support our subsequent evaluation for which we are being given accolades here today, I am truly honored to be presented this award by Admiral Cross. When people ask me who my heroes are, at the top of my list are the brave men and women of the United States Coast Guard.

Thank you

The National Boating Safety Advisory Council was established by Congress in the Federal Boat Safety Act of 1971. NBSAC is charged with advising the United States Coast Guard regarding recreational boating safety issues and regulation.

Equipped To Survive Foundation is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization that provides independent review and evaluation of safety and survival equipment and related issues. It publishes the Equipped To Survive Web site, the largest resource for survival equipment information in the world.

BoatU.S. Foundation for Boating Safety & Clean Water is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization that creates education and outreach campaigns, researches issues and products, and helps boaters and user groups learn specific actions they can take to be safer and better stewards of the environment while boating.

West Marine is a major U.S. headquartered, publicly traded marine chandlery chain and purveyor of marine safety equipment, both wholesale and retail.

For more information on Equipped To Survive or the Equipped To Survive Foundation contact: Doug Ritter

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Executive Director: Doug Ritter
Email: Doug Ritter
URL: http://www.equipped.org/etsfi_mr-nbsac.httm
First Published on: October 20, 2004
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