Hello everybody and welcome back to the Everything Ham Radio Podcast! In this episode we are going to be talking about the Amateur Radio Emergency Services(ARES), we talk about the Bridgeland Amateur Radio Club in Logan, UT in our amateur radio club spotlight, we talk about some upcoming events/contests and Hamfests for the next two weeks and wrap it up with some news from around the hobby!
Tech Corner – Amateur Radio Emergency Services(ARES)
What is ARES?
ARES is an organization started by the ARRL that consists of licensed amateurs who have voluntarily registered their qualifications and equipment for communications duty when disaster strikes. Every licensed amateur is eligible to apply for ARES membership.
ARES is broken down into four levels: national, section, district and local. The national level emergency coordination is handled at the ARRL headquarters by the ARRL Field Services and Field Sport Manager or his/her designee. They are responsible for advising all ARES officials regarding their problems, maintaining contact with federal government and other national officials concerned with amateur emergency communications potential, and in general carrying out the ARRL’s policies regarding emergency communications.
At the section level, the section emergency coordinator is an assistant to the section manager for emergency preparedness. The SEC is appointed by the section manager to handle all things dealing with emergency communications. Part of the SEC’s job is to support and help grow their sections participation in ARES functions. They are the person that is responsible for collecting all the district activity reports and making a consolidated report to the section manager and ARRL headquarters. They are also responsible to maintain a good work relationship with state and local governments, civil preparedness, Federal Emergency Management agencies, the Salvation Army, MWS, etc.
In large sections, the SEC has the option of breaking down the geographical area in smaller, more management areas or districts. If this is done, the SEC would make recommendations for a district emergency coordinator. This person would be a go between between the local and section levels with much of the same duties as the SEC has but on a smaller scale.
Lastly, we come to the local level. Each local area will have their own Emergency Coordinator that is appointed by the SEC. The local level EC is the most hands on of all the levels and is responsible for more as well. Parts of the local EC’s responsibilities are;
- Promoting and enhancing the activities of the ARES for the benefit of the public.
- Manage and coordinate training, organization, and emergency preparedness of interested amateurs in the area.
- Establish and maintain a good working relationship with local and state government officials.
- Develop detailed local operational plans with served agencies and partners in their jurisdiction.
- Establish a local communications network
- Establish an emergency communications plans
- And more…
The majority of the training that you will receive when you join your local ARES team will be done at meetings and on the air during nets. However, there are a few things that you can take as well and depending on your local ARES group some may be required as well.
- NIMS – IS-100.b
- NIMS – IS-700.A
- ARRL – EC-001 – Introduction to Emergency Communications
- ARRL – EC-016 – Public Service and Emergency Communicationss Management for Radio Amateurs
- ARRL – EC-015 – ARRL Public Relations – This is a good course to take if you are the Public Information Officer for your club or ARES group.
- Skywarn Storm Spotter Training – If your ARES group doubles as you local Skywarn team, this training may also be required, typically once every two years.
Along the same lines of training, what are you good at? Are you a good multitasker? Are you good under stress? Are you good at fixing things? There is so much that goes on during a disaster and the planning before hand that has to be done, if something is your “cup of tea” make sure that someone knows about it. If you are a good multitasker and you do good under stress, you should volunteer to be net control. If you are a good organizer, maybe you can help with the emergency planning before a disaster hits, or help design a drill. Even though our main responsibility with ARES and as a ham in general is communictions, there is so much more that goes on, make sure you let your local EC know what you are good at, what you like to do, or what you would like to learn to do so that they know and can assign you to what you are good at or get you training before a disaster hits so that you can do what you like to do.
Traffic handling is a very important part of our job as communicators. During an ARES operation, messages are passed using the RadioGram format of the National Traffic System. It is important to use this format when passing traffic because it keeps a record of the message, it is more concise which makes its faster when done correctly, and it’s easier to copy because the receiving station knows the order of the information that they are receiving therefore resulting in fewer errors and less repeats. Traffic handling is required training for all ARES members.
Pre-disaster planning is also an important part of the ARES organization. Planning before a disaster happens allows the organization to identifying those who may need amateur radio communications. After they are identified, you need to find out what the nature of the information they will need to communicate and who they will need to communicate with. Once all this information is obtained, drills should be done to make sure that everything is done correctly before a disaster happens.
Amateur Radio Club Spotlight
- Second Saturday of each month (Jan – May & November) at 10:00 AM on the 3rd floor of the Cache County Sheriff’s office (1225 West 200 North, Logan, Utah).
- During other months, the club is active in activities that they consider as meetings
- 146.720(-) PL 103.5 Mt. Logan link 147.26, 449.625, 145.31
- 449.625(-) PL 103.5 Mt. Logan link 146.72, 145.31, 147.26
- 145.310(-) PL 103.5 Red Spur (west of Randolph) link 146.72, 147.26, 449.625
- 147.260(+) PL 103.5 Promontory link 146.72, 145.31, 449.625
- 146.640(-) No PL Logan Valley Floor
- 147.200(+) PL 103.5 Logan Valley Floor IRLP node 3381
- Echolink node 495125
- 449.650(-) PL 100 Mt Pisgah (TV Translator Site) Intermountain Intertie Link
- Weekly Bridgerland Amateur Radio Club net is held every Tuesday at 9pm local time on the 146.720
- The BARC Ladies Net is every 2nd and 4th Tuesday at 8:00 p.m. on the BARC Repeater and Linked Systems (146.720).
- Northern Utah Technical Society (NUTS) D-Star Net – Sunday evening at 8:00 pm Mountain time. It is held on the 449.575 – NU7TS B, 447.975 – AC7O – B, 145.150 AC7O-C, 447.950 KF7VJO-B or 447.925 N7RDS-B repeaters and the D-Star Reflector 029C
- Beehive Utah Net – daily at 12:30pm local at 7.272 MHz
- Field Day
- Top of Utah Marathon
- Bear 100
- Rocket Recovery
- LOTOJA – Bicycle Race
- Little Red Riding Hood – Ladies Only Bicycle Race
|NCCC RTTY Sprint||0145Z-0215Z, Dec 16|
|QRP Fox Hunt||0200Z-0330Z, Dec 16|
|NCCC Sprint||0230Z-0300Z, Dec 16|
|Russian 160-Meter Contest||2000Z, Dec 16 to 2400Z, Dec 17|
|AGB-Party Contest||2100Z-2400Z, Dec 16|
|OK DX RTTY Contest||0000Z-2400Z, Dec 17|
|RAC Winter Contest||0000Z-2359Z, Dec 17|
|Feld Hell Sprint||0000Z-2359Z, Dec 17|
|Padang DX Contest||1200Z-2359Z, Dec 17|
|Croatian CW Contest||1400Z, Dec 17 to 1400Z, Dec 18|
|Stew Perry Topband Challenge||1500Z, Dec 17 to 1500Z, Dec 18|
|ARRL Rookie Roundup, CW||1800Z-2359Z, Dec 18|
|Run for the Bacon QRP Contest||0200Z-0400Z, Dec 19|
|QRP Fox Hunt||0200Z-0330Z, Dec 21|
|Phone Fray||0230Z-0300Z, Dec 21|
|CWops Mini-CWT Test||1300Z-1400Z, Dec 21 and
1900Z-2000Z, Dec 21 and
0300Z-0400Z, Dec 22
|NAQCC CW Sprint||0130Z-0330Z, Dec 22|
|NCCC RTTY Sprint||0145Z-0215Z, Dec 23|
|QRP Fox Hunt||0200Z-0330Z, Dec 23|
|NCCC Sprint||0230Z-0300Z, Dec 23|
|RAEM Contest||0000Z-1159Z, Dec 25|
|DARC Christmas Contest||0830Z-1059Z, Dec 26|
|SKCC Sprint||0000Z-0200Z, Dec 28|
|QRP Fox Hunt||0200Z-0330Z, Dec 28|
|Phone Fray||0230Z-0300Z, Dec 28|
|CWops Mini-CWT Test||1300Z-1400Z, Dec 28 and
1900Z-2000Z, Dec 28 and
0300Z-0400Z, Dec 29
*Information taken from the WA7BNM Contest Calendar
- MARA Annual Christmas Hamfest – Minden, LA
*Information taken from the ARRL Hamfest Calendar
ARRL Vows Continued Pursuit of the Amateur Radio Parity Act in the 115th Congress
The Amateur Radio Parity Act, H.R. 1301, died an unbefitting death as the 114th Congress of the United States drew to a close today. After having passed the House of Representatives on a unanimous vote, the bill stalled in the Senate due to the intervention of only one member, Sen. Bill Nelson (D-FL).
Over the course of the past year, Sen. Nelson has received thousands of e-mails, letters, and phone calls from concerned constituents asking for his support of H.R. 1301. Numerous meetings were held with his senior staff in an effort to move the legislation forward. Negotiations, which led to an agreement with the national association of homeowner’s associations and publicly supported by CAI and ARRL, were brushed aside by Sen. Nelson as irrelevant.
In a final meeting with the Senator’s staff earlier this week, it became clear that no matter what was said or done, the Senator opposed the bill and refused to allow it to move forward. Unfortunately, as the bill did not receive floor time, the only manner in which it could get passed in the Senate would be through a process that required unanimous consent, which means no one opposes the bill.
The legislation will be reintroduced in both houses of Congress after the 115th Session begins in January. We have already been in contact with the sponsors of the bill to allow for an early introduction, which will give us more time to obtain success. We believe that we can get his bill adopted given the fact that we were inches away from crossing the goal line. We will continue to need the support of the membership, particularly in Florida, as we go forward through the next year.
Phil Anderson, VE3FAS, Named to Canadian Amateur Radio Hall of Fame
The Board of Trustees of the Canadian Amateur Radio Hall of Fame has announced the appointment of Phil Anderson, VE3FAS, of Amaranth, Ontario, to the Canadian Amateur Radio Hall of Fame for 2016. The Constitution for the Hall of Fame specifies that the appointment is made “for outstanding achievement and excellence of the highest degree, for serious and sustained service to Amateur Radio in Canada, or to Amateur Radio at large.” The Board of Trustees determined that Anderson is “most worthy of this honour.”
Licensed in 1961, Anderson had a distinguished engineering career in defense research and space design, after which he became an instructor at Humber College. His Amateur Radio involvement includes 50 years of service with the National Traffic System, and he was awarded the prestigious Brass Pounders League Medallion for outstanding achievement in passing third-party traffic. He served the National Traffic System (NTS) Eastern Area and served as manager of the Eastern Canadian Net and Transcontinental Corps (TCC). He was also a QSL bureau volunteer for 20 years.
Anderson will be formally inducted to the Hall of Fame at a club event in 2017. Thanks to Ed Frazer, VE7EF, Chair of the Board of Trustees, Canadian Amateur Radio Hall of Fame
Emergency Communication Exercise Uses “Hamsphere®” to Introduce Youth to Virtual Ham Radio
Fifty students in Dominica were introduced to ham radio on November 23, in the form of a simulated emergency drill conducted via the virtual Amateur Radio platform HamSphere. W1AW at ARRL Headquarters monitored the exercise. HamSphere is a virtual Amateur Radio transceiver, available for iOS and Android devices. Under supervision, selected youth teams competed for speed and accuracy in a hurricane emergency communication drill, dubbed “Haminica 2016,” while becoming familiar with the virtual version of Amateur Radio.
Sponsoring the project was Dominica’s National Telecommunication Regulatory Commission (NTRC), and NTRC Executive Director Craig Nesty and Engineer George James, J73GJ, were on hand for the exercise. ARRL Emergency Preparedness Manager Mike Corey, KI1U, observed “Haminica 2016” at W1AW using the Hamsphere 3.0 platform. Well-known DXer Martti Laine, OH2BH — an enthusiastic Hamsphere supporter — and Brian Machesney, K1LI/J75Y, organized “Haminica 2016” and helped to conduct the Dominica exercise. While in Dominica, Laine celebrated his 70th birthday on the air as J70BH.
The exercise scenario was a hurricane about to make landfall on the island. Laine said that, at one point, the group conducting the exercise had to evacuate the station on short notice.
Laine said the NRTC is producing a video about the training exercise, and the event caught the attention of the national TV station, which reported the story in prime time.
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73 de Curtis, K5CLM