For decades, the Coast Guard’s NAVTEX towers have broadcast from Cape Cod to Kodiak Island. The global system broadcasts weather and safety information to boats large and small.
The International Maritime Organization developed the NAVTEX system decades ago as a means to get weather and urgent information to ships on the water. It’s low-tech. Receivers spit out basic telex-type messages onto paper or on a screen.
“The most common thing that you would see is a weather message, but you will also get public safety information messages,” said Derrick Croinex, the Coast Guard chief of spectrum management and telecommunications.