Forecasts Broadcast under the GMDSS

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Weather forecast services broadcast under the Global Maritime Distress and Safety System (GMDSS).


This is the prime source of all Marine Safety Information (MSI) including weather forecasts and warnings. Sailors must know what is available, when and how.

The value of the GMDSS and the necessity to use it cannot be overstressed. Forecasts and warnings are necessarily very broad brush but they do have the inestimable value of human, intelligent input. Experienced forecasters can give the best interpretation of the guidance from Numerical Weather Prediction models. They can see the output from models run by other Met services and from their own computer run under slightly varying initial conditions (known as ensembles). The best use of forecasts is to study both the GMDSS text forecasts and other data such as GRIB files and synoptic charts.

These pages are about GMDSS services for Europe, the eastern North Atlantic, the Baltic and Mediterranean. Depending on the area and forecast type these broadcasts may be by VHF, NAVTEX, Inmarsat and HF/SSB radio.