Shipwrecks On The Air (SWOTA) © is a dedicatory DX adventure concept in the same ilk as Lighthouses and Castles On the Air, devoted to the intriguing, yet at times tragic existence of vessels lost or ruined at sea.


Designed by the Dx Adventure Radio Club (DA-RC), the SWOTA Program © outlines a fascinating new DX paradigm for the Ham, Eleven Meter, Citizens Band and SWL communities; while also satisfying a number of other purposes not necessarily associated with radio communications.


The official aims and objectives of SWOTA are:

  • To advocate the protection of underwater cultural heritage, including the unauthorized salvage of Historic wrecks (known as ‘wrecking’);
  • To commemorate the loss of life caused by shipwreck and pay respects to those affected by the tragedy
  • To preserve the heritage and history of vessels lost or ruined at sea; and
  • To promote safety at sea by celebrating the contribution various organisations, bodies and individuals, as well as man-made structures, have made to providing safe experiences on the world’s shipways

Other intentions include:

  • To foster camaraderie amongst radio communications enthusiasts in general; and
  • To encourage maritime mobile (MM) operations and other portable forms of DXing


For the purpose of the Dx Adventure Radio Club’s Shipwrecks On The Air (SWOTA) Program, we define a shipwreck as…

“A complete or partial destruction of a vessel as a result of collision, fire, grounding, storm, explosion, or other mishap…”

Unlike the typical definition, the DA-RC wording refers to the tangible remains of the ship but not to the actual event that caused the wreck such as the striking of something that caused the ship to sink, the stranding of the ship on rocks, land or shoal, or the destruction of the ship at sea by violent weather.


DA-RC classifies shipwrecks as being either Contemporary or Historical.

Contemporary shipwrecks are of interest primarily because of the potential harm to the environment.  Other contemporary wrecks are scuttled in order to spur reef growth.

Many historic wrecks are of interest to recreational divers who enjoy diving shipwrecks because they are often interesting to explore, provide large habitats for many types of marine life and have an interesting history.


Historical shipwrecks are attractive to maritime archaeologists because they preserve historical information; for example, studying the wreck of Mary Rose revealed information about seafaring, warfare and life in the 1500s.

Military wrecks that were caused by a skirmish at sea are studied to find details about the historic event and reveal much about the battle that occurred.

For more information on SWOTA, including how to activate a shipwreck and referencing, please click HERE.