Feberuary 2017

February 2017

EC’s Bulletin

WE ARE IN THE BUSINESS OF BUILDING A VIABLE ARES® ORGANIZATION THAT IS PROPERLY TRAINED AND ADEQUATELY STAFFED WITH THE END GOAL OF FUNCTIONING PROFESSIONALLY IN ANY EMERGENCY THAT MAY COME OUR WAY.

Amateur radio means different things to different people. To some it is a hobby. To us in the ARES® (Amateur Radio Emergency Service®) it is a service. We offer this service to the local Office of Emergency Management, and disaster relief agencies in the community. Our served agencies do not care how we accomplish our goal, but they do expect quality results in the form of accurate, and concise messages complete with the proper service data. They require that we be trained by their standards. They are also looking for a clearly defined chain of authority.

The Federal Communications Commission recognizes the capability of Amateur Radio by stating in Part 97.1 (basis and purpose) of the FCC Rules and Regulation, “recognition and enhancement of the value of the amateur service to the public as a voluntary noncommercial service, particularly with respect to providing emergency communications.”

The ARRL (American Radio Relay League, Inc.) sponsors the ARES®. ARES® is recognized nationally for its contribution towards saving lives and property during disasters. ARES® has been in service to communities since 1935. It was originally called the “Amateur Radio Emergency Corp.” It has since changed its name to the Amateur Radio Emergency Service®. This is by far longer service than any other Amateur Radio group that provides emergency communications. Granted, most amateur operators can provide some type of communications during a disaster, but ARES® organizes our response through training and preparedness. The traffic-handling format used by ARES® has been tried and tested time and time again in many disasters. It has consistently met the standards set by the served agencies.

Individuals need not be a member of any club or ARRL to belong to the ARES®. You don’t have to spend every other weekend training for a disaster. It does require that you have a sincere desire to serve your community, and can operate in a controlled environment. Go to http://www.hamradioelpaso.com/emergency-coordination and check out ARES® Membership to see how you can get started today to be an ARES® member.

OTHER NEWS

Winlink 2000 news. Amateur Radio Digital Open Protocol (ARDOP) is currently in beta testing. ARDOP will be replacing WINMOR later this year. ARDOP has been around for several years under different names. In early 2000’s Rick Muthing, KN6KB (also the author of WINMOR) developed V4 Chat. This is a spinoff of AMTOR which has been around since the mid-80s. Then a few years later he changed the name to H4 Chat. After making ARDOB more robust, adding more bandwidth options and making it faster he changed the name to the present ARDOP. ARDOP is a more flexible protocol for messaging. It can be used on HF bands as well as VHF/UHF bands. In it's present form if you enjoy rag chewing you will like ARDOP. This is what most of us are using ARDOP for today while we wait for other messaging capabilities, and file transfer capabilities to be developed. Warren, KE5APX and I have been experimenting with ARDOP on the UHF band. We have been reporting our findings on the ARDOP Google.io Group. Rick, KN6KB has asked us to try to use ARDOP across a repeater.

D-RATS training. I am scheduled to start training in February for a Big Spring and Midland, TX amateur radio groups. It will consist of four one-hour sessions and will be web-based training.

Questions and comments regarding this article are welcome and encouraged. Send an email to the address shown below. 

NOTE: The terms ARES and Amateur Radio Emergency Service is both registered trademarks of the American Radio Relay League, Inc. and are used by permission. 

Lew Maxwell, KB5HPT
ARRL Emergency Coordinator-El Paso County
Assist. DEC Culberson and Hudspeth Counties
e-mail: kb5hpt@arrl.net
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