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Email Address. Important Information Close. Sorry, you can only compare 10 items. But for an efficient application of the service to emergency and disaster response, a higher degree of preparedness, including training, exercises and mobilization procedures, is desirable.

The structures of cooperation between the Amateur Radio Service and the national authorities, emergency services and disaster response providers depend on the situation in each country. The outline presented in the following sections is mostly based on the concepts used in the USA. The general principles should however be applicable in most parts of the world. In all cases, decisive factors include the number of Amateur Radio stations involved and the number of certified operators, as well as the structures of national response mechanisms.

All play an important part in serving their communities. While local groups may use the name ARES, it signifies only their primary activity is in participation with the overall program. The only qualification, other than possession of an Amateur Radio license, is a sincere desire to serve.

Members of ARES groups either use their own personal emergency-powered equipment, or operate equipment that the group has acquired and maintains specifically for emergency telecommunications. While some countries such as the USA are based on volunteers, others are founded upon governmental agencies. In addition, there are specialized groups such as Search and Rescue which use Amateur Radio communications as a tool for other goals and not for the communications itself. In many regions the linkage between Amateur Radio emergency groups and the national society may be quite thin.

In emergency telecommunications such SOP need to be in place in particular on message format and handling, the use of simplex channels, repeater operations, and on station identification. Following such standard principles of operations is preferable to the introduction of new and possibly not previously exercised ad hoc procedures.

Training — Amateur Radio operators may not need training on basic communication skills or general technical matters. They do however need to become familiar with the operational environment and with the partners they may serve. Training should focus on the following subjects: emergency telecommunications, traffic handling, net or repeater operation, and technical knowledge.

What is RACES?

Practical on-the-air activities, such as a Field Day or a Simulated Emergency Test SET offer training opportunities on a nationwide basis for individuals and groups and reveal weak areas in which more training or improvements to equipment are needed. In addition, drills and tests can be designed specifically to check the readiness and the reliability of emergency equipment that is not permanently in use. A drill or test that includes interest and practical value makes a group motivated to participate because it is purpose or goal oriented.

In order to present a realistic scenario, training should be centered on a simulated disaster situation and, if possible, in combination with training exercises of other partners in emergency assistance. Exercises — Drills should include the activation of emergency networks; including the assignment of mobile stations to served agencies, the originating and processing of messages and the use of emergency-powered equipment. As warranted by traffic loads, liaison stations may need to be assigned to receiving traffic on a local network and relay it to outside destinations.

To a large degree, the value of any exercise depends on its careful evaluation and on the application of lessons learned. The CP primarily controls the initial activities in emergency and disaster situations, and is typically a self-starting, spontaneously established entity. The initial functions of the CP are to assess the situation, to report to a dispatcher and to identify and request appropriate resources.

The Emergency Operations Center EOC responds to requests from a CP by dispatching equipment and personnel, anticipating needs to provide further support and assistance and pre-positioning additional resources in a staging area. If the situation at the site of the event changes, the CP provides the EOC with an update and maintains control until the arrival of additional or specialized resources.

By being located outside the perimeter of potential danger, the EOC can use any appropriate type of telecommunications, concentrate on gathering data from all partners involved, and mobilize and dispatch the requested means of response. Where national regulations allow, Amateurs Radio stations can handle such third party traffic both in routine situations and in times of disaster.

To do this efficiently, networks of radio operators are created. Network structures differ in the various countries. During an open emergency net, there is minimal central control by a Net Control Station, if indeed there is an NCS at all. Stations call one another directly to pass messages. Unnecessary chatter is usually kept to a minimum.

Episode 3: Public Service

Open nets are often used during the period leading up to a potential emergency situation and as an operation winds down, or in smaller nets with only a few stations participating. A directed emergency net is created whenever large numbers of stations are participating, or where the volume of traffic cannot be dealt with on a first-come first-served basis.

In a communication emergency of any size, it is usually best to operate a directed net. In such situations the NCS can prioritize traffic by nature and content. In a directed net, the NCS controls all net operations. The NCS will determine who uses the frequency and which traffic will be passed first. Casual conversation is strongly discouraged and tactical call signs will probably be used.


Tactical call signs can be assigned to stations at various sites, locations and different purposes. See tactical nets below. The message formats chosen to handle traffic on a network depends on operational conditions and its selection requires knowledge of the possibilities and limitations of the telecommunications resources available. Tactical traffic supports the initial response operations in an emergency situation, typically involving few operators within a limited area.

Tactical traffic, even though unformatted and seldom written, is particularly important when different organizational entities are getting involved in the operations. The use of one VHF or UHF calling frequency, including possibly the use of repeaters and network frequencies, characterize most typical tactical communications. One way to make tactical network operation transparent is to use tactical call-signs, i. When operators change shifts or locations, the set of tactical calls remains the same.

Amateur Radio stations must however identify their stations at regular intervals with their formal, assigned, individual call signs. Despite the wide spectrum of requirements in a disaster situation, Amateur Radio operators should neither seek nor accept any duties other than those foreseen in the agreements regarding their status in an emergency operation.

Volunteer communicators are not the decision makers in relief operations. We only provide telecommunications in support of those who do the actual emergency response. Operators with skills in other fields such as search and rescue or first aid and affiliation to respective organizations need to decide in advance, which role they wish to accept within an operation. Under normal circumstances an, Amateur Service link connects two parties communicating with each other.

In emergency situations, operators will be requested to pass a message on behalf of a third party, a person or organization that is not necessarily present at the radio station. Genuine Plastic Radios of the Mid Century. Great Grundig Satellit Grundig Ocean Boy Years. Heard Island Odyssey. Heathkit Test Equipment Products.

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