Roadsise Assist with InReach device

Submitted: Saturday, Apr 02, 2022 at 11:46
ThreadID: 143495 Views:2419 Replies:3 FollowUps:2
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Hi. Just purchased an InReach device and wondering in case of a break down how to you call road side assist like RACV or NRMA.
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Reply By: Rusty Iron - Saturday, Apr 02, 2022 at 13:50

Saturday, Apr 02, 2022 at 13:50
Don't know about your particular Inreach but mine only sends / receives text messages via satellite, or can act as an EPIRB. (Do NOT use the EPIRB function for breakdowns unless your life is in danger)

Before going bush, you have to setup contacts via your online account, that you can then text message. Then in the event of a remote breakdown, you message them to contact the relevant people for you.

So to clarify - ordinary mobile phone when in range, or the Inreach when remote, by text messaging your previously setup contacts list.
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Reply By: Member - Duncan2H - Saturday, Apr 02, 2022 at 16:43

Saturday, Apr 02, 2022 at 16:43
I have a reciprocal agreement with my adult son (we both have a Garmin InReach Explorer).. when he is on a trip he'll message me details of his location, breakdown or issue and I'll coordinate whatever resources necessary to assist him - and keep him updated. He will do the same for me.

I dont think it'd be possible to SMS any of the roadside organisations etc.. best to have a coordinator ready to work on your behalf who you trust.
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Reply By: Ozhumvee - Sunday, Apr 03, 2022 at 07:36

Sunday, Apr 03, 2022 at 07:36
We've had a HF radio since the early 80's, bought a very early Iridium/Motorola satphone which has been updated over the years, also have one of the first Inreach which no longer works and have carried an epirb/plb since they became available.
The only ever time we had a non repairable vehicle breakdown was a few years ago and the satphone was next to useless for contacting NRMA or in fact any organisation with an automated answering system as the the phone systems can't handle the delay and drops out or puts you back to a repaeat of the menu. Even when a human contact is made they still don't understand the delay and often hang up.
Resorting to the HF and the VKS network had the problem sorted and tilt tray on the way within the hour.
I've subsequently disconnected the satphone due to both increased charges and the need to update the actual phone. The HF is still in the truck and ready to go as required.
I have been looking at a new Inreach mini 2 though.
In my opinion an Inreach type device would be useless for contacting anyone that didn't understand where the message was coming from. Great as a personal PLB and great for the life threatening situation, also good for letting family know you are ok when out of phone range and organising help if required but as has been said you really need a family member or close friend who knows how it all works to organise stuff in relation to large organisations that can help.
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Follow Up By: Rusty Iron - Sunday, Apr 03, 2022 at 15:03

Sunday, Apr 03, 2022 at 15:03
The Inreach is far from useless if you just use a bit of common sense. You determine a reliable contact who will be at or close to home while you're away. You also give that contact a list of numbers for various organisations or companies that you might need. Even without an exhaustive list of every possible service that might be needed, hopefully your contact person has heard of Google and will be able to find the right thing anyway. If you then have a problem that needs outside help, you simply message the contact with your location and details of what is needed. You have over-dramatised the potential problems with satellite comms. In practice, it just isn't that hard.
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Follow Up By: AlbyNSW - Sunday, Apr 03, 2022 at 18:31

Sunday, Apr 03, 2022 at 18:31
I am in Peters camp on this. The inreach is definitely better than nothing but still falls short of what a sat phone can do
There is nothing better than talking direct to someone who can assist you rather than being relayed via text from a third party.
I have rung my mechanic and he has talked me through diagnosing and then telling me how to fix it myself
On another occasion we rang for medical advice for treatment of a sick child which escalated to an RFDS airlift of the child on day three after numerous correspondence

These are the type of scenarios that highlight the shortcomings of a device you cannot directly communicate with the right people

Just the same they are better than having nothing
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