Tuesday, May 01, 2012

May Day May Day May Day

Today is May Day, a Jour Férié ( Bank Holiday) here in France to celebrate La Fête du Travail and La Fête du Muguet, but did you know that the distress signal May Day May Day also originated from France , from the French for M'aider ( Help me ). This internationally recognised distress call is repeated three times so that there can be no confusion over the air waves when someone calls for help.
You know we will never let you live this down!!!!
The distress call can be used from an aircraft or seacraft when one is in 'grave and imminent danger of death ' ie a fire, explosion or possible sinking. No other air traffic is allowed until a rescue is completed once a MayDay has been issued and a hoax call of "MayDay" is a criminal offence carrying a hefty prison sentence.
Pan Pan ( derived from the French word, en panne meaning broken down) is also another distress call , but not as urgent as MayDay - it can be used internationally if one is in difficulty but not a life threatening scenario.
Thankfully, I've never found myself in a situation where I've needed these distress calls but nevertheless, they are good ones to have in the back of your mind. You just never know when you will get stuck in the mud banks on the river and need to be airlifted from your boat by the rescue services, eh Mr Getrealfrance?!


  1. Did u know that it made day time tv yet again yesterday !!!!

    1. hee hee hee very funny
      Although must admit, had a little tear when I saw it first, the poor kids, they were so brave!

  2. Poor Brian and co., thank God for the Air and sea rescue services. GAB xxx


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