CHAPTER 2: Boating Equipment
VDS HANDLING AND STORAGE
Always store pyrotechnic visual distress signals in a cool, dry place that is easy to access. This will ensure they remain in good condition and are ready in an emergency. Be careful not to puncture or otherwise damage the protective coverings of the VDS.
The best way to keep these devices in good condition is to store them in a watertight container, like a surplus ammunition box. If possible, paint the box red or orange and mark it with the label “Distress Signals”.
If there will be young children on board, make sure to store your pyrotechnic distress signals in a safe place where they won’t be tampered with.
Finally, remember that all Coast Guard-approved pyrotechnic VDS come with an expiry date. Once expired, the device will not count towards meeting the regulations. Check your VDS periodically and replace if damaged or expired.