Booth 52046, Outdoor Retailer Summer Market Salt Lake City, Utah -- After five years of product development, market research and outreach to more than 4,000 search and rescue (SAR) agencies and professionals, the TracMe Personal Locator Beacon is now available for outdoor adventurers as their 11th essential. Only $150 MSRP and 1.6 ounces, this lightweight and easy-to-use personal locator beacon uses the same Channel 1 FRS/GMRS frequency as more than 100 million trail radios currently in use in the United States. The affordability and one-time use design (with free replacement after legitimate use) makes this personal locator beacon technology available to adults and children for scouting, camping or hiking. Rather than venture without a PLB, a TracMe helps locate a lost person in hours instead of days with only 3 to 6 search team members.
retailers and outfitters as well as many search and rescue
professionals around the U.S. have been waiting for a more affordable
beacon to give people an added advantage during their backcountry
travel," said Joe Rainczuk, CEO and co-founder of TracMe PLB Pty Ltd,
based in Melbourne, Australia (with U.S. operations in Seattle).
personal use of satellite locator beacons became available to the
general public through changes in U.S. Federal Communications
Commission (FCC) policy changes nearly four years ago, the price of
satellite-based personal locator beacons made them prohibitive for most
consumers and they are not suitable for children. As a result, sales
and use of satellite PLBs by the general public for day hiking,
scouting or group activity outings has been minimal. Further issues
with inadvertent/accidental activation of satellite PLBs includes a
waste of limited search and rescue resources and the potential of an
expensive fine. An alternative was necessary which would give an adult
or child an added advantage if they are reported lost," Rainczuk
"We also emphasize that a TracMe cannot serve as a
substitute for legally required satellite beacons on aircraft or
off-shore/open ocean water craft, and should be a supplement to a
satellite beacon on an extremely remote expedition," added Rainczuk.
"A beacon that doesn't change much of what you already do before going outside"
TracMe personal locator beacon meets the needs of the middle ground
with its affordability and ease of use-and by assisting search and
rescue professionals with a radio signal that has a ground and aerial
search range from 2 to 30 miles-dependent upon the sophistication of
direction finding equipment being used and nature of the search area.
designed a TracMe to increase the link to backcountry safety and
dovetail with the existing preparation of an outdoor enthusiast. You
still need to prepare: know where you are going, read a map, pack your
essentials, and let your roommate or family know when you are expected
to return. For children, they know to wear it and pull it apart - but
only in a real emergency," explained Tilo Schmidt, Chief Technical
Officer and co-founder of TracMe. "A TracMe is designed for one-time
use to avoid accidental activation or abuse. But we replace it free
when it is used in a legitimate search and rescue situation."
TracMe PLB has a 10-year shelf life with a high quality lithium battery
that transmits a "Help...Emergency" voice message every 15 seconds for
approximately seven days.
Prepare, pack, inform.....
packaged with a Leave-Behind-Card as a reminder to leave a note about
the user's whereabouts and expected return time. There is also a
Dashboard Card to lay or hang from your car's rear-view mirror at the
trailhead to inform SAR personnel that you have a TracMe, and a
reminder card to pack essentials and self-test the beacon before
Thousands of SAR professionals and groups updated before launch; free loan of training equipment; free training materials
years of market research coupled with search and rescue stakeholder
outreach told us that it was critical to inform the search and rescue
community about the TracMe, and provide as many opportunities for
training and education as possible," said Schmidt. Our team has spent
months contacting the SAR community, giving workshops, and initiating a
free SAR Field Kit program to help train their teams. The SAR resources
page on TracMe's website has had a lot of traffic in the past two
months leading up to the OR Summer Market launch," he said.
The real difference is a simple advantage
real difference is that when you are reported lost, TracMe's signal
gives a search and rescue team a greater starting advantage by reducing
the size of the search area, and more than likely finding you in hours
instead of days. That is a real difference especially if you are out in
the elements. And a real difference for all those SAR volunteers who
are spending time and resources looking for you," said Rainczuk.
About TracMe Personal Locator Beacons Pty Ltd
Personal Locator Beacons (PLBs) is an international organization based
in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia and Seattle, Washington, USA
dedicated to applying technological advances to finding lost
adventurers faster. TracMe's first product uses a simple and well-known
technology which uses the same Channel 1 signal as nearly 100 million
trail radios currently used in the United States. It is affordable,
light and easy to use. TracMe's Channel 1 FRS/GMRS radio signal works
with land and airplane search techniques. TracMe evolved from an idea
in 1992 to create a small, simple, affordable and effective radio
locator beacon that could be used by anyone while engaged in outdoor
activities, including situations where the conventional satellite-based
PLBs are not appropriate for general use.
To activate a
TracMe, you simply pull the top and bottom of the beacon apart. When
activated, the TracMe PLB sends the voice message "Help...Emergency"
continuously every 15 seconds for up to 7 days. TracMe PLBs are
designed for one-time use but not abuse. They are the most affordable,
longest lasting and lightest weight beacon available in a non-satellite
beacon category: only 1.6 ounces, 3.2-inches long at $150 MSRP, they
are smaller than an energy bar. When activated for legitimate search
and rescue, an expended TracMe PLB will be replaced free of charge.
Designed with an enclosed built-in lithium battery to last 10 years in
backcountry and waterway adventure conditions, TracMe PLBs are the 11th
essential for responsible outdoor adventurers anywhere. Visit
www.TracMe.com for a comparison chart of a number of beacons, their use
and their technology.
TracMeTM Launches Next Generation Personal Locator BeaconThursday, 09 August 2007
After five years of product development, market research and outreach to more than 4,000 search and rescue (SAR) agencies and professionals, the TracMe Personal Locator Beacon is now available for outdoor adventurers as their 11th essential. Only $150 MSRP and 1.6 ounces, this lightweight and easy-to-use personal locator beacon uses the same Channel 1 FRS/GMRS frequency as more than 100 million trail radios currently in use in the United States.
David Johnston has been introducing people to the sport of sea kayaking for the past 15 years. He is a senior instructor trainer with Paddle Canada and teaches for several paddling schools in Ontario, Canada. Full Bio.