Similar Terms: Personal Locator Beacon,PLBs, Personal Distress Beacon, Personal Emergency Beacon

Personal Locator Beacon, which notifies search and rescue agencies of distress by emitting a signal on the 406MHz Frequency. Also known as Personal Distress/ Emergency Beacons.


PLB's utilise the Cospas-sarsat and GEOSAR satellite systems to pinpoint your exact location, using the beacon's HEX ID number. The PLB coordinates are then sent to the appropriate regional or local agency to begin rescue efforts. PLBs can be equipped with GPS technology that transmits your LAT/LONG for precise locating and faster rescue.


406MHz PLB's with GPS features have a location accuracy of 100m - 120m (A). Without GPS capability in your PLB, the location accuracy extends out to 5km (B).


(A) Finding CH Smith using a PLB with GPS   (B) Finding CH Smith using a PLB WITHOUT GPS
120m   5km