I had a wee chat with Paul and George from Tacticom Radio Systems a while back about getting some VHF handsets for work.
They supplied us with some nice wee IP55 rated sets due to being in the elements and proximity to water.
At the South-side festival the other weekend I had used the radio that was in my pocket and then bent over to pull a kayak up out the pond, my heart sank when there was a splosh and the radio sank to the bottom !
I could not see it as the kayaks had stirred up the bottom so I came back 2 mins later and I could see the radio sitting on the bottom.
I reached in to about elbow depth and pulled it out, immediately turning it off and removing the battery.
I left it for an hour and then switched it on and hey presto it worked fine.
I also managed to get a hold of a couple of Wintec GPS sets that plug into the VHF hand sets allowing you to transmit your position to other sets on your frequency ! Genius.
The GPS unit is also a speaker and microphone allowing you to store the radio out of the elements in a jacket pocket or rucksack lid pocket.
PTC and I used the briefly on Ben Lui and we have also used the with Duke of Edinburgh award groups out on expedition.
The great thing is you can be sitting on high ground and track each groups progress with the handset.
Each handset can be set up with a name and then you can track that handsets speed bearing etc
It has all the normal features of a GPS including compass, altitude etc
The handset also has a man down button which will alert other handsets of your location and guide them into your position.
A great bit of kit for mountain rescue teams and people like Forestry workers who may be out on the ground alone and in remote places that have no mobile signal.
Handsets can also be tracked by a base unit connected to a computer at HQ allowing ” big brother” to watch where everybody is.
It only ways 100g as well so you hardly notice it on your pack.
I have always been a big fan of radios for events etc and this to me makes plenty of sense.
Some people may think the price tag of over £200 a bit steep but like the Spot tracker you are buying piece of mind and safety for your staff.