Flat-screen TV emits international distress signal

Discussion in 'Community' started by SiliconAddict, Oct 18, 2004.

  1. SiliconAddict macrumors 603


    Jun 19, 2003
    Chicago, IL
    EUGENE, Oregon (Reuters) -- TV hardly gets much better than this.

    An Oregon man discovered earlier this month that his year-old Toshiba Corporation flat-screen TV was emitting an international distress signal picked up by a satellite, leading a search and rescue operation to his apartment in Corvallis, Oregon, 70 miles south of Portland.

    The signal from Chris van Rossmann's TV was routed by satellite to the Air Force Rescue Center at Langley Air Base in Virginia.

    On October 2, the 20 year-old college student was visited at his apartment in the small university town by a contingent of local police, civil air patrol and search and rescue personnel.

    "They'd never seen signal come that strong from a home appliance," said van Rossmann. "They were quite surprised. I think we all were."

    Authorities had expected to find a boat or small plane with a malfunctioning transponder, the usual culprit in such incidents, emitting the 121.5 MHz frequency of the distress signal used internationally.

    Van Rossmann said he was told to keep his TV off to avoid paying a $10,000 fine for "willingly broadcasting a false distress signal."

    Toshiba contacted Rossmann and offered to provide him with a replacement set for free, he said.

  2. Abstract macrumors Penryn


    Dec 27, 2002
    Location Location Location
    Whatever. I didn't know about it. Thanks. :)

    How can a signal be so strong from a single television? You'd imagine that satellites must pick these signals from tonnes of Toshibas out there, as many probably use the same parts and such.
  3. belair macrumors 6502


    Jun 10, 2004
    Nobody got it

    The tv was in distress and needed to get out of there fast.
    Boy must it have been happy when it saw the law inforcememt finally arriving. That transmitting must have been a hell of an effort for a normal tv. And yet the police just left. Poor little machine…
  4. Thomas Veil macrumors 68020

    Thomas Veil

    Feb 14, 2004
    Later reports indicated that the TV was a Toshiba prototype that was mistakenly shipped. The prototype included an "intelligent chip".

    Apparently van Rossman watched nothing but reality TV shows and Fox News Channel, and the TV reacted accordingly.
  5. Wyvernspirit macrumors 6502a


    Jul 23, 2002
    :D That is too funny.

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