March 2017

March 2017

EC Bulletin

Would you like to serve your community during an emergency/disaster without attending any meetings, or doing any additional training, or spending any additional money for expensive equipment? Would you like to serve your community during an emergency/disaster without leaving your home or neighborhood? Are you the leader of an organized amateur radio group that can rally your membership during an emergency/disaster?

There is a need for public service volunteers that meet these requirements. Eyes and ears are sorely needed during emergencies/disasters to report situations in the red zone zip codes.

There is a method set up so that reporting will be simplified. The method utilizes networking and the Internet as a primary method of reporting. It is a method that allows transmitting pictures or videos. Remember pictures speak a thousand words. Amateur radio or citizens band radio frequencies could be used as an alternate method of reporting.

Know Your Neighborhood is a program that gives amateur radio operators a defined mission. It is a program that depends on volunteers reporting the situations in their zip codes. The objective of Know Your Neighborhood is to cover each zip code in the county with many volunteers so that the public safety personnel can be re-directed to only doing their primary jobs. This program does not replace SKYWARN or other public service programs provided by Amateur Radio - it supplements them.

Volunteers should not spontaneously relocate or roam unless specifically told to do so or do so for immediate personal safety. Inefficient duplication of efforts and unanticipated gaps are created if volunteers do not function within the concept of areas and border-based plans. Mitigation, response/relief, and recovery efforts require utilization of co-operative expectations.

Requested information will be fed to each registered volunteer or group leader via the Internet unless otherwise specified. Each member of an organized amateur radio group should register as an individual, but indicate which group they are affiliated with. Double counting of individuals will be reduced. Group leaders will disseminate the information in their routine manner. This way networking can be accomplished and hopefully covering a wider area. The reports received from the volunteers will be directed to its intended recipient where it can be combined with any other inputs received from other public safety personnel in the field.

Geographic dispersal and personal knowledge of community realities form a foundation for trustworthy and meaningful understanding of emergency/disaster conditions.

Questions and comments about this article are welcomed and encouraged. Click on the email address shown below.

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