Look Back | Board warns seafarers

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P&T’s principal engineer transmission, Ben Whiting, stands beside the transmitter which the Suva City Council’s new multi-storey carpark will block, and points to the receiving station at Navua. Below him are the foundation piles of the car park. Picture: FT FILE

The Fiji Marine Board once warned of the possibility of sea disaster because of unsatisfactory services provided by 3DP Suva Radio.

This was reported in The Fiji Times on Friday, December 3, 1976.

The board’s monthly meeting decided to ask for an urgent inquiry into the functioning of 3DP to ensure immediate improvements were made.

In another development, the Secretary for Posts and Telecommunications, Mr John Manikiam, accused Suva City Council of breaking an agreement by erecting a high-rise car park near the General Post Office in Suva which would obstruct telephone and telex communications.

The Fiji Marine Board’s secretary, Ravindra Nath, said it was very disturbed by reports of dissatisfaction with services being provided by 3DP to ships in Fiji waters.

“It appears that ships all too often cannot raise or get response from 3DP often for long periods during normal working hours and, therefore, the board feels that the whole operation of Suva Radio should be looked into immediately to see where improvements may be made,” he said.

“Failures of masters to be able to contact Suva readily could have disastrous results at any time of emergency and this could lead to loss of life at sea.”