LifeLine saved me!


I was kayak diving today for lobster off Fort Pierce, Florida. Diving 16-20 feet on a steel 100. It was mildly choppy and some wind when I went down. Two hours later when I came up 5′ seas with whitecaps, 25 mph winds and I was cold getting colder. I was about a mile or so out. I started paddling and my best efforts I did not make any headway. The seas were building and tide change to outgoing was less than one hour away. I am shivering at this time and realized it is bad and getting worse. I can not improve on this and it will only get worse with time. I tried to call on channel 16 but there were no boats out (crappy weather) I hit the Red Button (DSC) and heard USCG talking. I could not respond with the wave heights and how far they are away. I held the radio up to talk again and Sea Tow heard me. He came out and when he radio’d he was out the inlet and headed north I popped a smoke canister. He radio’d he saw it and shortly I was saved. Best $300 I ever spent! You saved me. I have never been beyond self rescue before with all my adventures and it is pretty scary. Luckily I had help with me.

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Nautilus LifeLine equipped Blue Planet Liveaboards

Nautilus LifeLine equipped
Blue Planet Liveaboards

The Nautilus LifeLine is a VHF marine rescue radio with GPS that puts safety into the hands of everyone in or on the water.

This Marine Rescue Radio is depth rated to 425 feet (cap closed) and is a very simple but incredibly clever way to call or send a distress message to boats around you up to a demonstrated range of 34 miles. (under any surface conditions)

The Nautilus LifeLine works everywhere in the world. It is a true peace of mind for everyone in or on the water.



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It allows users to send a digital emergency “mayday” ….

Nautilus Lifeline VHF

During our recent test of man-overboard electronics (PS, May 2013)—alarms, beacons, and self-rescue devices—we came across a rescue communication product that’s been making waves in the diving community: the Nautilus Lifeline marine rescue radio. Being lost at sea is one of the fears that divers and sailors share—remember the 2004 movie, “Open Water”?

Photos by Frank Lanier

The Nautilus Lifeline’s cover must be open to access VHF and DSC functions. Testers noted that the small plug for the USB charging port isn’t tethered and could be easily lost.

The Nautilus Lifeline is a handheld VHF radio that has GPS and DSC capabilities. It allows users to send a digital emergency “mayday” that includes their personal information and their location, and it allows them to talk to rescuers.

Invented by Capt. Mike Lever of the liveaboard dive boat Nautilus Explorer, the Nautilus Lifeline features a tough polycarbonate housing and a latching clamshell cover that is waterproof to a depth of 425 feet (when closed). Users must open the cover while out of the water or at the surface, to access the VHF, speaker, and DSC controls, all of which are waterproof to a depth of 3 feet.

The Lifeline features a roughly 1.75-inch by .625-inch LCD that shows such information as GPS location, the number of satellites in view, the channel in use, and the battery’s charge level. When scrolling through the menu, the screen shows volume, squelch, and channel selection. Other visual displays include a green charge light and a position-indicating strobe that flashes when the device is in distress mode.

Three buttons control the VHF: chat, hailing, and DSC. The green chat button, which also doubles as the “on” button, allows users to key up a pre-selected VHF channel (68 for example) and communicate with other VHF radios on the same frequency. The chat channel can be changed by pressing it three times, then selecting from a list of pre-loaded channels. The orange hailing button is akin to a quick-16 channel selection button; it allows users to key up and communicate on channel 16, the international VHF hailing and distress frequency. The red DSC button allows users to send a DSC emergency distress message to all DSC-capable VHF radios in the vicinity.

The Lifeline has an 1850 mAh lithium-ion battery that provides 24 hours of power while in distress mode, according to the maker. Charging is via a plug-sealed USB port that can connect to a 110/220-volt AC adapter or a computer USB port.

We tested the Lifeline during a two-week cruise through the Bahamas and during the return passage to Florida. Testers used it while snorkeling and as a primary VHF for the dinghy. We also included it in our MOB gear pouch.

What We Found
The floating, easy to carry Lifeline got high marks for its robust construction and its GPS tracking features. To record the coordinates of a location, or even export them to a map’s API when hooked up to a computer, all you have to do is simply power the Lifeline up. We found this particularly useful at new snorkeling spots and once, to mark where the dinghy anchor was lost.

As with any piece of electronics with numerous functions and only two control buttons, accessing the Lifeline’s advanced functions is not particularly intuitive. For example, to adjust volume on the Lifeline, users have to press the Chat button and the Hailing button at the same time, then scroll through the menu with the Chat button until reaching the “Volume” option, then press the Hailing button to lower it or the Chat button to increase it. Also, there’s a 2- to 3-second delay between the radio being keyed and the voice transmission beginning—this could be an issue if the user is unaware of it or forgets in an emergency.

The Lifeline is well made, but there are some improvements that we’d like to see. The untethered USB protective cap is small and can easily be lost. We’d also prefer that the display had backlighting and that the DSC capabilities included sending non-distress messages.

According to the maker, a firmware update due out later this summer will address the user interface challenges we had. It also will include a new, more intuitive menu system.

Bottom line: The submersible Lifeline is great for divers, and we’d recommend it for those seeking an emergency VHF that can handle diving depths. But for its $299 price, sailors can get a top of the line, waterproof handheld VHF radio with GPS and DSC that provides the same key safety features, more functionality, and is more intuitive to operate. The top picks in our most recent VHF test (PS, July 2013) would all fit the bill.

For the the original article:

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“We felt pretty good to know that we have a friend at hand to communicate with others…and it works.”



We had to use the Lifeline in Curaçao. Nothing dramatic…

we lost one of our buddies. She just missed the entrance into the beach and was actually swimming the other way. So we had to start a little search.
Walti, my buddy in the pic took the lifeline and started the search, while I stayed on the beach and kept contact with him using the Nautilus LifeLine,
after a few minutes he confirmed the successful search. Worked fine! So no boat searching.

We felt pretty good to know that we have a friend at hand to communicate with others…and it works.

Rene Naf

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Proud to be a sponsor of “under the pole expedition”

underwater exped


To watch the video:

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Testimonial from John de Pinna,North Shore Projects, South Africa


I spend a large amounts of time playing on jet skis in heavy surf but still require a radio to launch, beach and emergency. I enjoy rough heavy seas and normally break about five or six radios a year. I was mailed a brochure of the Lifeline from Killerdeals in SA, I had a look at the radio and believe that its the only radio viable for my use, and that has proved correct.

2014_May5_South Africa testimonial _JohnIn SA most of the ski boat launch site require a 29 MHz but that is slowly changing as the 29 MHz hand held units currently available are absolutely useless for our application. All jet ski skippers weather they fish or play are having issues with the 29 as a result the clubs are starting to allow VHF as well.

I believe that there is a good market for a strong waterproof VHF – I attach it to my vest, if I am thrown from the ski and the ski is washed onto rocks at least I have a radio in hand. Its a great product so far no problems at all, if you consider the price its very cheap compared to five radios a year that break up on landing big jumps. The radio being attached to my vest is isolated from the impact and vibration of the ski which works well.


John de Pinna

North Shore Projects cc

Kwa-Zulu Natal, South Africa

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Nautilus LifeLine- Marine Rescue Radio With GPS

SCUBALAB ( -March/ April, 2014 – P.68)

This GPS-equipped marine VHF radio is more than a cool toy
– the Nautilus Lifeline could save your life. The company
designed it based on a simple premise: Calling for help
at sea should be easier than using a satellite-based

Push the green button to chat with your dive boat or friends;
push the orange one to call any nearby boat on Channel 16. If all else fails, push the red button to send a digital distress message with your GPS location to radios within a 4,000-square mile area. Rechargeable via US B, the Lifeline is splash-proof on the surface in talk mode, and waterproof to 425 feet when closed.

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Nautilus LifeLine Ltd. is proud to sponsor SUDS (Soldiers Undertaking Disabled Scuba)

Nautilus LifeLine Ltd. is proud to sponsor SUDS (Soldiers Undertaking Disabled Scuba) who held a special fundraising event this past weekend in Florida.

SUDS Diving Mission:

“Soldiers Undertaking Disabled Scuba (SUDS) is designed to help improve the lives of injured service members returning from Iraq and Afghanistan. By training the warriors in a challenging and rewarding activity it can help facilitate the rehabilitation process and promote mobility. Offering this venue provides the service member with a sport they can enjoy during their rehabilitation and throughout their life.”- Suds Diving, Inc. (

Special thanks to the Organizers, Eric Voss & Lindsay Kaye, for bringing this together with a variety of sponsors and a great group of people to raise funds for such a worthy cause. 2014_Apr_7_SUDS

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Human remains with possible shark bites could be missing diver, WA police say

Police believe a diver missing off the coast south of Perth may have been killed by a shark, after human remains were discovered with possible shark bites.

Michael McGregor, 38, failed to resurface after diving with two friends several kilometres off Dawesville Cut, about 80 kilometres south of Perth, early on Saturday afternoon.

Water police have been searching for the missing diver since Saturday.

PHOTO: Police say human remains found with apparent shark bites are probably those of the missing diver. (WA Police)

Water Police divers yesterday found human remains believed to be that of the missing man close to the dive site.

In a statement, police said a preliminary investigation “indicates the male may have received shark bites”.

However, they stressed the cause of death remained unclear and his friends did not see any shark attack.

Fatal shark attacks in WA since 2000

  • Surfer Chris Boyd: Gracetown Nov 23 2013
  • Surfer Ben Linden: Wedge Island, July 14 2012
  • Diver Peter Kurmann: Geographe Bay, March 31 2012
  • Diver George Wainwright: Rottnest Island, Oct 22 2011
  • Swimmer Bryn Martin: Cottesloe Beach, Oct 10 2011
  • Surfer Kyle Burden: Bunker Bay, Sept 4 2011
  • Surfer Nick Edwards: Gracetown, Aug 17 2010
  • Snorkeler Brian Guest: Port Kennedy, Dec 27 2008
  • Snorkeler Geoffrey Brazier: Abrolhos Islands, Mar 18 2005
  • Surfer Brad Smith: Gracetown, July 10 2004
  • Swimmer Ken Crew: North Cottesloe, Nov 6 2000


If Mr McGregor was taken by a shark it would be the first fatal attack since the State Government introduced baited drum lines off the WA coast in January.

Water police and volunteer marine rescue boats, together with a police dive team and helicopters, have been scouring the area since Saturday.

Police said further investigations were continuing and a report would be prepared for the coroner.

The waters off Western Australia have seen an unprecedented number of fatal shark attacks recently – including six fatal incidents in just over two years.

The last fatal shark attack in WA occurred in November, when surfer Chris Boyd was taken near Gracetown in the state’s south-west.

Professional abalone diver Greg Pickering survived an attack near Esperance in October.

Meanwhile, a woman has been taken by a shark off the New South Wales far south coast town of Tathra.

Chris Armstrong, in her 60s, was swimming with a group between the wharf and Tathra Beach about 8:20am (AEDT).

The swimmers were about 100 metres offshore when they saw Ms Armstrong taken by what they believe was a shark.

According to the Australian Shark Attack File, there have been 85 recorded “unprovoked” attacks, 18 of which were fatal, in WA in the past 100 years.

Original Article:

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Police search for diver who failed to resurface near Mandurah

POLICE will resume a search at first light for a diver who went missing off the Mandurah coast on Saturday.

A Fremantle Water Police spokesman said concerns were growing for the welfare of the 38-year-old Peel man who failed to resurface from a dive 5km offshore from the Dawesville Cut, just south of Mandurah on Saturday afternoon.

The missing man is reportedly a local who knows the area well and is an experienced diver.

The spokesman said a group of five friends arrived at the location late yesterday morning and the missing man had dived once before disappearing.

The group contacted police about 1.30pm when he failed to return to the boat.

“They’re obviously quite distressed themselves and so are the family,” he said.

Police are using four-wheel-drives to search the shoreline between Dawesville and Halls Head, while an air search would resume at first light after being grounded on Saturday afternoon due to “rough weather”.

Search teams involved today include a Surf Lifesaving helicopter, Peel Water Police, Fremantle Water Police dive team, Mandurah Water Rescue Group, Rockingham Volunteer Sea Rescue Group, Fremantle Sea Rescue and the departments of transport and fisheries.

Poor conditions hampered the search on Saturday with divers pulled from the water, police said.

Marine police are coordinating the search from Fremantle, through an incident commander on the Peel water police boat that is combing the search area.

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