Sep 092007

Steve Fossett wears a Breitling Emergency wristwatch. As you can see, it’s a good-looking multifunction analog/digital. It’s also got Breitling’s temperature-compensated Superquartz movement, so it’s highly accurate.

What makes it really special, though, is that it contains an emergency transmitter. The wearer can unscrew and extend the antenna (the large knob near the lower right lug), and transmit on 121.5 MHz (an aviation emergency frequency) for 48 hours. The transmission will go 100 miles or so in ideal conditions, but half of that is a slam-dunk under any conditions. It also has a separate battery from the one powering the movement.

Fossett hasn’t activated that watch. And it’s been long enough now that he’d be past hesitating on the basis of not bothering anyone needlessly, or some similar reason.

I hope he’s all right. He’s a hero, and we need heroes. Unfortunately, heroes sometimes die pursuing the very activities that define them. I fear that’s what has happened.

Thanks to for the Breitling image.

You might also like:

  • State of the Union!
    I’m live-blogging it! Right. As I type it’s about a half an hour out. I just took a look at what is …
  • More TV than you can watch
    So I just sent The Road back to Netflix today. I might have watched 10% of it. Mostly I’ve walked by…
  • Thursday miscellanea #342
    I’ll be substantially participating in Huntsville Restaurant Week, and I’m looking forward to it. S…
  • Casio scratches the geek watch itch
    I’ve loved wristwatches since I could tell time. I wear one continuously, and only take it off for t…
  • Thursday miscellanea #415
    Far too many of you are using pleasurable when you should use pleasant. Pleasurable has fairly stro…

 Posted by at 6:41 pm

  3 Responses to “Steve Fossett’s watch”

  1. I seem to be out of a loop here – is the guy missing?

  2. Yes, he flew off from an airport in Nevada several days ago and has not been heard from since.

  3. My understanding is that he owns and usually wears the watch but that he happened not to have worn it this trip.

    No signal detected by satellite or search planes on 121.5 or 243 MHz from the Crash Position Indicator but such devices often fail to activate on impact or are destroyed by crash forces. Water and terrain could easily block such signals anyway.

    Soon only digial EPIRB signals on 406MHz will be acted on by satellites.

 Leave a Reply

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>




This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!