Visual Distress Signals (VDS)
The Coast Guard does not test materials or systems for approval but rather specifies the required test methods and minimum performance criteria for approval. Product testing must be performed by a Coast Guard Accepted or Recognized Independent Laboratory.
Please send the Submittal Package and other related information to TypeApproval@uscg.mil. Please see What to submit when corresponding with ENG-4 regarding equipment approvals/renewal. For files sizes above 10MB and less than 8GB you may submit correspondence via the ARL Secure Access File Exchange (SAFE) at https://safe.arl.army.mil/.
Once the equipment has been approved by this office, it will receive Coast Guard Type Approval and a Certificate of Approval (COA). The COA will be issued for 5 years and will remain valid during that time period if the product meets the testing of the Quality Control Program.
For a complete listing of USCG Type Approved Equipment, please visit the Coast Guard Marine Information Exchange (CGMIX).