Long Range Operator Certificate of Proficiency (LROCP)

Preparation and Exam

Skipper and crew, should be confident to operate the radio equipment on any boat. You never know when you may be called upon to issue that important distress call or coordinate radio communication while your skipper comes to the aid of another vessel.

The course provides a guide to the Long and Short Range Operator Certificate of Proficiency exam. A program of coaching, self study and pre-exam revision will help increase your knowledge and allow you to approach the examination with confidence. The training session is approximately 3.5hrs followed by a revision session and exam one week later. Your internationally recognised certificate is issued by the Australian Maritime College upon passing the exam and practical assessment.

Overview

Operators of marine VHF and MF/HF radios are required to be certified in accordance with international conventions and agreements to which Australia is a party. There are two levels of internationally recognised certification relevant to recreational sailors and boaters -

The Short Range Certificate (SRC) for VHF operation, known in Australia as the Short Range Operator Certificate of Proficiency (SROCP).

The Long Range Certificate (LRC) for VHF and MF/HF operations, known in Australia as the Long Range Operator Certificate of Proficiency (LROCP).

NOTE - The Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA), as the government regulatory body, has recently approved a new qualification called the Australian Waters Qualification (AWQ). The AWQ is only valid for VHF operation in inland and territorial waters. It is not valid beyond the 12nm territorial waters limit nor is it recognised outside Australia. With these restrictions in mind ORCV recommends recreational sailors obtain the LROCP or, as a minimum, the SROCP. N.B. To upgrade from SROCP to LROCP requires re-sitting the full exam hence the recommendation to do the complete LROCP.

Outcomes

The course culminates in a supervised examination and now includes a practical assessment.

  • The exam is prepared by the Office of Maritime Communication at the Australian Maritime College (OMC); a division of the University of Tasmania.
  • The exam is 25 multiple choice question for the SROCP or 50 multiple choice questions for the LROCP.
  • After completing the written exam, all candidates are required to complete a supervised practical assessment using VHF and HF equipment as appropriate to the certificate they wish to obtain. 
  • The pass mark is 70%
  • Upon successful completion of the examination, the candidate will receive their certificate in the mail directly from the OMC.
  • The certificate is valid for life and does not require renewal.

This course will result in participants acquiring the knowledge to participate confidently in marine radio communications. While there will be some practical content, including some hands on operation of a radio for assessment purposes, the main emphasis is on understanding the regulations, protocols and land based stations. For this reason we recommend that sailors use the radio regularly when boating to notify their local marina or harbour control of their movements - this is both good safety practice as well as the opportunity to become comfortable with radio operations and procedures.

The ORCV has developed a complementary training session, “Practical hands-on marine radio workshop”, which is recommended as a supplement to provide practice and confidence in using marine radios. This practical training includes routine communication, group skeds and distress situations as well as understanding the capability of the ORCV mobile communications van which is used to support our our on-water events.

Prerequisites

No prior knowledge or reading is required.

Minimum prescribed age in years - 16.

What to bring

Notepad, highlighter pen and pen or pencil.

Course Outline

This course provides a guide to the topics covered in the exam and provides a program of coaching, self study and pre-exam revision which is designed to both increase your knowledge and allow you to approach the examination with confidence. The course is run over two sessions and consists of a training night, a self study period of around one week, followed by a revision exercise and the exam approximately one week later. Practical assessment is organised separately.

Candidates will become to familiar with -

  • ·Basic radio components and controls.
  • ·Distress, calling and working frequencies.
  • ·Maritime communication stations and coast radio stations.
  • ·Marine repeater channels, simplex, duplex channels and the Victorian/Tasmanian repeater network.
  • ·Simple electrical circuits and related fault diagnosis
  • ·Standard radio usage protocols
  • ·Distress, urgency and safety protocols
  • ·Digital Selective Calling (DSC) distress procedures.
  • ·EPIRB operation and SART Operation

The assessment component now includes a practical assessment.  The course provides some hands on experience during the first training session but personal experience/practice is recommended  prior to the practical assessment.

Marine Radio

Qualifications

Upon successful completion of the examination and assessment, participants will receive the relevant certificate (SROCP or LROCP) from OMC. The certificate is valid for life and there is no further assessment or renewal process. OMC can also replace lost certificates for a small fee

ORCV requires that at least one, and for Category 2 and above events and double handed entries, two members of the crew to hold the relevant certificate of proficiency. In times of distress or urgency, the skipper will have many things to deal with and having a competent crew member take charge of the radio will free the skipper to deal with other tasks.

Course Materials

All participants will be provided with -

  • A 48 page study guide.
  • A number of handouts relevant to certain topics.
  • References to supporting information online.
  • Access to the online practice examination.

Sessions and Duration

The course comprises two sessions with a self study period in between.  The course consists of two evenings on 6th & 13th September 2019. 6:30pm – 9.30pm.

Cost

ORCV Members and Beyond the Bay participants: $195
Non Members $220

Cost includes printed study guide and OMC examination sitting fee and practical assessment supervision.

The full Marine Radio Operators handbook can be ordered for an additional $50. It is only required by boat owners who have a MF/HF radio fitted and do not already have a copy.