A handheld VHF radio, like the Icom M94D used for example in this video, proves to be an essential bit of boating equipment. It is more convenient than a phone for calling a fuel dock or marina. And, when it comes to emergency use, a VHF has no equal: it allows communicating to other boats without needing to know a number and the Coast Guard, and other authorities are always monitoring it.
In this episode, Jim Hendricks, our West Coast and Electronics Editor, describes the proper procedure for making a, “radio check,” call. Boaters use radio checks to, well, check that their VHF radios are working. But many do so, likely without knowing it, in a way that is improper. In this video, Hendricks describes the right way to make a radio check with a marine VHF radio.