Verizon Wireless Offers Emergency Calling to Boaters

Verizon Wireless Offers Emergency Calling to Boaters

May 5, 2000


Patti Finley


May 5, 2000-SEATTLE-With the official arrival of a new boating season, Verizon Wireless reminds boaters not to cast off without their wireless phones.

By dialing *CG (*24) SEND on any Verizon Wireless phone, boaters on Puget Sound, Lake Washington, and Canadian waters have a direct connection to the U.S. or Canadian Coast Guard. "VHF-FM maritime channel 16 should still be used as the primary means for reporting an emergency," said Kelley DeLaney, regional president for the Pacific Northwest Region of Verizon Wireless. "But *CG is another way to get help if there is an emergency, or to pass along information about a navigational hazard that could endanger boats."

While boaters can enjoy the convenience and time-saving features of wireless service, its important to keep in mind that wireless phones can also serve as lifelines in emergency situations.

"Verizon Wireless has some of the most extensive marine coverage in the Northwest, so boaters can feel comfortable using their phones as a reliable means of communications," said DeLaney. "Wireless coverage on the water not only increases convenience, it also enhances safety and security."

Just as wireless users are encouraged to exercise caution when driving and dialing onshore, boaters should keep in mind these safety tips when navigating and dialing:

  • Safe boating is your first priority.
  • Make sure your phone is positioned where it's easy to see and reach.
  • Use the speed dialing features on your phone to program frequently called numbers.
  • Let your wireless network's voice mail pick up your calls when you're unable to

    answer the phone. If you're heading into a navigational hazard, it's easy to retrieve your

    messages later on.

  • Use your wireless phone to notify someone onshore of your whereabouts and destination

About Verizon Wireless

Verizon Wireless is the largest wireless communications provider in the U.S. with more than 16 million wireless voice and data customers and nearly 4 million paging customers. The new coast-to-coast wireless provider was formed by the combination of the U.S. wireless businesses of Bell Atlantic Corp. (NYSE:BEL) and Vodafone AirTouch Plc (LSE:VOD; NYSE:VOD). The new company includes the assets of Bell Atlantic Mobile, AirTouch Cellular, PrimeCo Personal Communications and AirTouch Paging. Verizon Wireless will be further strengthened by the addition of the wireless assets of GTE Corp. (NYSE:GTE) when it completes its merger with Bell Atlantic. When the merger is complete, the new company will have a footprint covering more than 90 percent of the U.S. population, 49 of the top 50 and 96 of the top 100 U.S. markets.

Verizon Wireless, headquartered in New York City and Bedminster, NJ, is 30,000 employees strong. Reporters and editors can find more information about the company in its Media Center on the Web at: http://www.verizonwireless.com/mediacenter.