Project and Camp Communications

Table of Contents
19.0 Communications 
19.1 Risks and Hazards 
19.2 Responsibilities (Due Diligence) Regarding Communications
19.3 Equipment Selection 
   19.3.1 Equipment Considerations
   19.3.2 Satellite Telephones 
   19.3.3 Two-Way Radios 
   19.3.4 Mobile or Cellular Telephones
   19.3.5 Emergency Locator Devices (ELTs, PLBs, EPIRBs)
19.4 Training
19.5 Communications Routines, Schedules and Protocols 
   19.5.1 Routines and Schedules 
   19.5.2 Radio Use Protocols
19.6 Emergency Communications 
   19.6.1 Project Emergency Call List
   19.6.2 Company Hotlines
19.7 Communications Tips Regarding Transportation 
19.8 Resources


Regular communications play an extremely important role in safe and effective exploration work. Good communication promotes safe work, builds morale, and encourages the efficient use of time, equipment and personnel. Established and tested communications routines are essential during emergency situations. The term communication covers all contacts between offices, projects, base camps, fly camps, fixed wing aircraft, helicopters, crews on traverses, parties travelling in vehicles (including all-terrain vehicles and snowmobiles) and boats. Company communications routines should also include check-in systems for personnel who are working out of a hotel etc., and for those travelling outside their home country. 

Because no single communications system or check-in schedule will suffice, it is usually the responsibility of each project manager to develop and maintain standard operating procedures (SOPs) for routine and emergency communications. Each project or camp manager should assess the requirements of their work site(s) and take into account such factors as isolation, terrain, time of year, weather, means of transportation and other pertinent risks.