Hello to all….
….Plan for Evacuees to be moved to Otis Air Force Base in Cape Cod, Massachusetts turned back on but with less evacuees….
….Approximately 100 evacuees arrived Thursday Afternoon while another 100 evacuees arrived late Thursday Night/early Friday Morning….
….Cape Cod Red Cross fully activated once again with Cape Cod ARES in stand-by mode. Does not appear messaging services are required for this operation at this time….
….SATERN send a request nationally for 10 2-Ham Operator teams for deployment to the US Gulf Coast for Health & Welfare traffic services and Eastern Massachusetts ARES offers support for deployment along with remote support if needed….
The plan for evacuees at Otis Air Force Base has been turned back on and over 100 evacuees arrived at Otis Air Force Base Thursday Afternoon. Cape Cod Red Cross went into full activation mode and Cape Cod ARES went into stand-by mode with Cape Cod ARES District Emergency Coordinator and Red Cross Communications Officer, Frank O’Laughlin-WQ1O, manning the Cape Cod Red Cross chapter. Dan Howard-K1DYO also went to the chapter and visited the air base to see if any Amateur Radio support from a Health & Welfare traffic perspective or other communications perspective was needed but no need existed. Frank Murphy-N1DHW was there representing the Salvation Army and had their communications vehicle and contact was made by Cape Cod ARES with Frank as they were prepared to support any of his needs as well. Another 100 evacuees arrived late Thursday Night into early Friday Morning for a total of slightly over 200 evacuees present at the Otis Air Force Base. A maximum total of 500 evacuees are now expected at the facility. Eastern Massachusetts ARES will continue to monitor to see if there is a need for Amateur Radio support at the air base but current indications are that no support is needed. An article concerning the operations can be seen at the following link:
SATERN, the Salvation Army Team Emergency Response Network, put out a request seen on the ARRL National Web Site for the need of 10, 2-Ham teams of Amateurs to deploy to the Northern Gulf Coast for Health & Welfare traffic handling. The request can be seen at the following link at the national ARRL web site:
Eastern Massachusetts ARES made contact via email with Jerry Schneller-N2HPO to offer the possibility of assisting with deploying teams at their request and offer remote traffic handling support to SATERN. Jerry sent a reply in capital letters with “THANK YOU” and that they were assessing their needs and would get back to us. My contact information was sent to Jerry and will await further feedback. Concerning an email sent to NN1N-David Patton, special assistant to the ARRL CEO, and W4OZK-Gregg Saratt, Alabama Section Manager on any assistance required for the affected area, no response has been received.
The ARRL has put out further articles on the disaster relief effort including asking for employers to assist employees who want to deploy their skills to the affected area. Those articles can be seen at the following links:
The ARRL has also put together a Public Service Announcement which can be heard at the following link:
This is suitable to send to Radio and TV stations concerning the efforts of Amateur Radio in the disaster relief effort. The ARRL has also setup a section on Hurricane Katrina disaster relief at the following link:
The above are the latest updates on Hurricane Katrina disaster relief. Below is suitable information on Hurricane Katrina disaster relief from the previous coordination message issued on this effort:
On Sunday and Monday 9/4-9/5, N1XRS-Tony Duarte and I spent several hours monitoring the SATERN (Salvation Army Team Emergency Radio Network) Net on 14.265 MHz and the Health & Welfare Net on 7.290 MHz on 40 Meters when propagation allowed it via the SEMARA Club Station, W1AEC. The SATERN Net was successful in facilitating several rescues over the past couple of days and had liaisons to MARS contacts. That net has been dealing solely with emergency and priority traffic. Its not clear when the net will shift to Health & Welfare if at all. SATERN has setup a web site concerning health and welfare traffic at http://www.satern.org/ where you can search by name or fill out a Health and Welfare form. The Red Cross has provided a family links registry on their web site at http://www.redcross.org to try and reunite families. Special thanks to Jim Ward-N1LKJ, Section Traffic Manager, for providing this information.
Jim Ward also reports that 16 NTS traffic messages have been handled and sent into the affected area as a Health & Welfare traffic. It is not clear if those messages reached their intended destinations. On Monday September 5th, Fox-25 in Boston was looking for a Ham involved in such operations and Jim Ward-N1LKJ was interviewed and featured on Fox-25 News at 10 for his efforts. Special thanks to Jim for agreeing to doing the interview given that he was involved in efforts that attempt to reunite loved ones.
Eastern Massachusetts ARES made contact with Erin Sarris, Associate Director of Disaster Services Preparedness and Response, Sunday Evening September 4th. Thus far, only a small number of Red Cross personnel from Mass. Bay has been deployed. With the sheltering of evacuees taking place on Cape Cod, there is little direct involvement from Mass. Bay in that process. Mass. Bay Red Cross is not directly looking for communications deployments currently and recommended to continue following the ARRL/ARES path for deployments.
If you look at the national web site, at the following link:
You will see that they have made an update on how to sign-up for possible deployment to the affected area. They are now asking anyone who is interested to sign up via the following database link:
Those that have already signed up via the email address of firstname.lastname@example.org have already been forwarded to the appropriate personnel per what is stated on the national web site so you do not need to sign up again using the database link provided above if you’ve already sent an email to the ARRL address.
The database link http://katrina.ab2m.net/ will ask for similar information as what was asked for via the arrl.org email address. They will ask for name, call sign, contact information, equipment you can bring down and I’d also recommend providing training and previous experience in emergency communications for the mission in such a note. I would strongly recommend working through your ARES EC/DEC or myself before sending an email to that address. There are many things to consider including the fact that lodging and other conditions may be extremely poor and there will most likely be a lot of coordination issues given the fact that this is such a large disaster relief effort for served agencies to manage and our leadership wants to make certain you are aware of the risks and are fully prepared to be involved if you consider deployment. As Steve Schwarm, W3EVE, quoted from Westchester County Red Cross, “Blessed are the flexible, for they will not get bent out of shape” and this very true for this major relief effort. Once that is complete and if you decide to accept such a mission and have signed up on the database link provided above, please copy your ARES DEC and myself to such an email so that we know you are being considered for going to the region and keep us posted on whether you are accepted for deployment. That way our leadership can assist in communication to your family and friends if required. It will also help to make sure that we do not displace too many resources to the region. As I’ve stated previously, hurricane season is far from over and there remains an ever present threat through at least the first week of October of a hurricane striking our region. We also need to keep in the back of our minds that ever present threat of terrorism to our region and having resources available to tend to that unexpected threat if it occurs.
Once again, there should be absolutely, positively, no self-deployments to the region. The situation down there is extremely tense and anyone who is down there without proper authorization despite their best intentions is likely to receive a very bad reception. Please work through our ARES leadership as we will continue to work very hard to keep you informed of changes in a situation that is changing by the hour and minute as the situation slowly becomes more stable and proper assistance can be provided.
Massachusetts Bay Red Cross has posted a status report via their web site that provides a good status on their response to this catastrophic disaster. The link appears below:
The Salvation Army also has status information and headlines via their web site. That link also appears below:
There are many other agencies providing support for this effort. The links above are intended to provide response information from 2 of the main agencies we deal with but there are dozens of others that are also providing support.
I would also like to thank one Amateur who has sent information to ARRL via the email address for possible acceptance of deployment and notified me that he had sent a note concerning possible deployment. I would also like to thank another Amateur who cannot deploy himself but has offered equipment to help someone deploy who may not have the equipment required to deploy down to the region. These Amateurs are showing the spirit of Eastern Massachusetts ARES by offering to help and also providing the ARES leadership with appropriate information on the help that they are offering. That teamwork and support is very much appreciated!
The ARRL has started an ARES E-letter that people can sign up for that gives updates on ARES happenings across the country. The ARES E-Letter is typically issued monthly but for Hurricane Katrina, a special e-letter was posted this morning and contains fantastic information on frequencies in the affected area and updates from each state affected by Katrina. It also features the response efforts of neighboring sections. The link to the ARES E-Letter is listed below:
For those interested in signing up for the ARES E-letter, please see the link below:
Please contact myself or your ARES DEC with any questions, comments or offers for support during this time period both here at home for any assistance that we can provide from here in the relief effort or for actual deployment to the affected area. On behalf of the entire Eastern Massachusetts ARES staff, we look forward to working with everyone to properly make a difference in this trying time for the United States caused by one of the worst natural disasters in the country’s history.
Robert Macedo (KD1CY)
ARES SKYWARN Coordinator
Eastern Massachusetts ARES Section Emergency Coordinator
Pager #: (508) 354-3142
Home Phone #: (508) 994-1875 (After 6 PM)
Home/Data #: (508) 997-4503 (After 6 PM)
Work Phone #: (508) 346-2929
Email Address: email@example.com