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Response to AmyStrange (Original post)

Mon Feb 1, 2021, 08:40 PM

203. Even if you get lost in a "No Service" area, a cell can still help others find you.

 

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Disclaimer: I'm not an expert on cellphones or smartphones, but I'm sure many of them do this, and I'm also sure someone will correct me if I'm wrong, but please, read the whole post first.


When you send a text, and your phone can't find a tower, it will keep it on file UNTIL it finds one, and then it will send it. This is known as a store and forward service.

The interesting thing about signals from cell towers is that sometimes (with the right atmospheric conditions) they'll go further than they normally would, and will sometimes even bend around corners.

What that means is if you get lost in an area where there's no service, and you decide to keep moving, your phone will send the text as soon as it finds one of those rouge signals. Telephone engineers can then look at the data and tell which tower the signal originated from, and from that, they can narrow down the search area.

Of course, most survivalist will tell you that the best thing to do if you get lost is stay in one place, but sometimes that's not possible, and that's when this trick is most effective.

As a matter of fact, this is exactly what happened when James Kim and his family got lost. He didn't make it, but his family did:


FROM: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/James_Kim

Although the Kims had a cellular phone with them, their remote location in the mountains was out of range of the cellular network, rendering the phone unusable for voice calls. Despite being unusable for voice calls, their cell phone would play a key role in their rescue. Cell phone text messages may go through even when there appears to be no signal, in part because text messaging is a store-and-forward service. Two Edge Wireless engineers, Eric Fuqua and Noah Pugsley, contacted search and rescue authorities offering their help in the search. On Saturday, December 2, they began searching through the data logs of cell sites, trying to find records of repeaters to which the Kims' cellphone may have connected. They discovered that on November 26, 2006 at around 1:30 a.m., the Kims' cellphone made a brief automatic connection to a cell site near Glendale, Oregon, and retrieved two text messages. Temporary atmospheric conditions, such as tropospheric ducting, can briefly allow radio communications over larger distances than normal. Through the data logs, the engineers determined that the cell phone was in a specific area west of the cellular tower. They then used a computer program to determine which areas in the mountains were within a line-of-sight to the cellular tower. This narrowed the search area tremendously, and finally focused rescue efforts on Bear Camp Road.

On the afternoon of December 4, John Rachor, a local helicopter pilot unaffiliated with any formal search effort, spotted Mrs. Kim and her two daughters walking on a remote road. After he radioed the family's position to authorities, the three were airlifted out of the area and transferred to a nearby hospital.

Law enforcement officials said that the discovery of the cellphone connection, and the subsequent analysis of the log data, was the critical breakthrough that ultimately resulted in the rescue of Kim's wife and daughters by helicopter.
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LineNew Reply Even if you get lost in a "No Service" area, a cell can still help others find you.
AmyStrange Feb 1 #203
AmyStrange Feb 2 #204
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