ARRL NNJ Section ARES Report...
ARRL NNJ Section ARES Report
1st Quarter 2009
George Sabbi KC2GLG
ARRL NNJ Section Emergency Coordinator
ARES activities in the NNJ Section over the last few months have been active. Several groups have used the colder months to reinforce their personal and group training, with several groups holding formal classes as well as many individual ARES Members taking additional FEMA and ARRL EmComm Classes. On the formal training note, please be aware that the ARRL is soon moving towards a 2-tiered setup with its EmComm Classes. In the near future, what was a 3 level training program will be condensed into a 2 level program. More information is available from the ARRL at: http://www.arrl.org/news/stories/2009/04/07/10756/?nc=1 . Taking the ARRL EmComm courses, along with practicing and understanding the items covered in them, is a good basis for getting all ARES members on the same page operations-wise, which during an EmComm activation, can be vital to having smooth and consistent operations.
The NNJ Section ARES Leadership has recently successfully tested and implemented, an automated phone and electronic media alerting system, similar to a reverse 9-1-1 system. This affords NNJ Section ARRL Leadership the ability to quickly and efficiently contact local ARES Leaders, in the event of a wide area Amateur Radio related EmComm situation.
Several hospitals in the NNJ Section have already, or are now, implementing plans for formalized amateur radio support during times of communications emergencies. NNJ ARES Leadership throughout the Section is working directly with these facilities to setup not only complete operation plans for staffing the stations, but also overseeing onsite installations of equipment, including radios and antennas at many of the hospitals.
As the Spring and Summer seasons arrive at long last, please remember that its time for the severe weather potential to increase in and around the NNJ Section. The NWS Mt Holly NJ and the NWS Upton NY will both conduct SKYWARN Spotter Training Classes in various part so the NNJ Section. Starting this year (2009) the NWS Mt Holly NJ, as was previously implemented by the NWS Upton NY, will be asking all SKYWARN Spotters to renew their formal training, at least once every 3 years in order to be considered as a an active (listed in the SKYWARN Spotter Database) SKYWARN Spotter. Remember, there is no requirement for a SKYWARN Spotter to be an amateur radio operator (but it does help) so, when there is a Class offered in your area, why not make it a full family activity? Information on local SKYWARN Spotter Classes is available online at: NWS Mt Holly NJ SKYWARN Program: http://www.erh.noaa.gov/er/phi/skywarn/index.html and for the NWS Upton NY SKYWARN Program: http://www.erh.noaa.gov/er/okx/Skywarn/skywarn.html
For more information on these, and other activities related to ARES in the ARRL NNJ Section, you can directly contact your local ARES Leader. Information on who they are, and how to contact them, is available on the NNJ ARES Webpage at: www.hudson.arrl.org/nnj/ares. You can also send me an email at: KC2GLG@... with any ARES questions, comment or concerns and remember to always Stay Safe!