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Yacht Charters: May Day…where does the term originate?

HAPPY MAY DAY

It is May 1st.  Happy May Day!

 

WHAT DOES IT MEAN?

Where did the nautical term, “Mayday,” originate?

A white lifering floating on olive green water. The ring is white, and the words, SOS, are written on it, in red, 4 times. It is floating with the lettering up.

Mayday is an emergency distress signal used in radio communications. 

The term comes from the French word, “m’aider” (pronounced “mayDAY”).  As a distress call, it is always repeated 3 times.  It is universally recognized.  When only used once (as in, “Mayday,” versus “Mayday Mayday Mayday”), it is used to discuss an actual distress call that is under investigation.

 

DOES IT MEAN THE SAME THING IN FRENCH?

M’aider in French means “help me.”   In France, it is not considered a distress call.  It is a commonplace “help me,” as in, “can you help me do this?”

 

WHEN IS MAY DAY USEFUL?

Although it’s a rare occurrence to hear this call on a luxury yacht charter vacation, this surely would have been used during the sinking of superyacht Yogi.

Interested in learning more nautical terminology?

In conclusion, if you’d like to learn more nautical terminology or book your own private yacht vacation, contact 1-800 Yacht Charters today.  Call or click https://www.1800yachtcharters.com/book-now-contact-us/

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