This is a message from Tom Matisko, N1SKZ, SEC of the New Hampshire Section. It is interesting reading.
Subject: Fwd: Hams help with Columbia recovery: MSNBC
Date: Mon, 10 Feb 2003 21:53:57 -0500
On Monday February 3rd, I attended an ARRL Emergency Communications Class that was being held in Londonderry by Gary Okula, N3CLZ. As part of the class, Gary asked the students; “what would hams in NH do if the shuttle accident happened over the Granite State”. As many of you probably know, this scenario is not entirely out of the realm of possibility, as the runway at the Pease Trade Port is classified as an emergency landing strip for all shuttle missions.
The scenario that was discussed in the class was the support of the Red Cross, and other relief organizations, who would be providing services for those engaged in the recovery effort. As you will see when you click on the link contained in the following email, hams are involved in much more. They are once again filling communications gaps for first responders. While we certainly pray this type of disaster never occurs again anywhere, let alone in NH, it does give us pause to think. We in NH live a relatively safe existence, but disasters do happen. And, they can happen in the ways we least expect.
While our hearts go out to the families of the Columbia crew, we should be proud of our fellow hams and ARES members who are providing critical assistance to find those items that will bring closure to the investigation and the families.
My thanks to Steve, KB1DIG, for bringing this article to my attention. Also my thanks to N3CLZ for setting up and teaching the communications class. Last but certainly not least, thanks to all those in NHARES who continually improve their skills to better serve the residence of New Hampshire. Please read on to the MSNBC story below.
Tom Matisko, N1SKZ
Section Emergency Coordinator
New Hampshire AReS [ARES]
Story line: Hams help with Columbia recovery
FBI, local police turn to amateur radio operators
By Gary Krakow MSNBC
Feb. 9 — The Columbia space shuttle breaks up upon re-entry. Debris lands over hundreds of square miles — often rugged and rural territory where cell phones are out of the question and even police radios are often out-of-range and useless. In this case, as during weather disasters and other calamities year in and year out — officials turned to ham radio operators for help
For the complete story: