All distress signals have distinct advantages and disadvantages. No single device
is ideal under all conditions or suitable for all purposes. Pyrotechnics are universally
recognized as excellent distress signals. However, there is potential for injury
and property damage if not properly handled. These devices produce a very hot flame
and the residue can cause burns, ignite flammable materials and may be otherwise
too dangerous to use.
All boaters should be able to signal for help. Boaters must have current dated
U.S.C.G. Approved day and night signals for all boats operating on coastal and open
bodies of water.