Jimmy Fund Walk Help Requested, 9/18/05

Jimmy Fund logoSteve Schwarm, W3EVE writes:

The Jimmy Fund walk is Sunday, Sept 18th. I am in need of more ham to help with this worth while event. The walk is along the Boston Marathon course but mostly involves the last half from Wellesley High School in to Boston. This is a low key event but the ham communications is important to its success and safety. This is an excellent event for first timers and fun for the old hands at Public Service event.

Please respond to this email or call my cell if you have questions or are available. Please, talk it up on the air.

73

Steve Schwarm, W3EVE
sschwarm-at-mitre.org
Cell: 508-922-9688

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CERT Family Day for September 10th Cancelled

The following message was forwarded by Ray Cord-K2TGX from the Sturdy Memorial ARES Team:

Due to Katrina and the deployment of many State and some local assets we have been forced to cancel the CERT Family Day event scheduled this Saturday (September 10, 2005). More than half of the assets scheduled to attend the event have been deployed and others are on stand-by. The decision to cancel was just made as we need to notify a lot of people and vendors. Please notify your CERT team members and others who may have planned to attend the event. 1

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Amateur Radio Assistance Needed for MATE'2005 in Northern Middlesex County Mass.

The following was posted to the MRAS_General email list by Terry Stader-KA8SCP, Region I RACES Radio Officer concerning the MATE’2005 Exercise in Northern Middlesex County on Friday September 23rd and Saturday September 24th, 2005:

There will be a multi-agency, multi-community exercise involving Lowell, Dracut and Billerica on Friday, 9/23 and Saturday, 9/24. Amateur Radio support has been requested for this drill.

The major portion of the exercise will be conducted during the day time on Friday with additional events occurring on Saturday.

Here is an opportunity for Amateur Radio to team up with police, fire, EMS, ambulance companies, hospitals as well as our common support roles working with the American Red Cross and community emergency management agencies.

If you would like to part of this event, please let me know ASAP. Our role will depend entirely on how many of us are available.

Terry M. Stader – KA8SCP
MEMA Region 1 Communications Coordinator/RACES Officer
ARRL EMA DEC for Region 1 RACES
President, The Police Amateur Radio Team of Westford – WB1GOF
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MMRA Repeater Update

MMRA logoBob DeMattia, K1IW writes:

As you may know, the Minuteman Repeater Association placed a repeater in Brookline, MA a few weeks ago on 146.610 MHz. This frequency is shared with our repeater in Marlborough.

After some conversations with neighboring repeater owners, we were able to find a sixth 2m frequency so that we would not have to have two repeaters operating on 146.61. However, this change requires a little bit of shuffling. These changes will be done in stages. When all is complete, the BROOKLINE repeater will move to our 146.820 frequency. The WESTON repeater will move to a new frequency of 146.790. Both repeaters receive -600 KHz with a PL of 146.2.

This also allows us to return the 146.61 repeater in Marlborough to the MMRA standard PL of 146.2.

Currently, step 1 is nearly complete: The Marlborough ’61 machine is back to the standard PL. The Brookline repeater should be operating on 146.820 MHz sometime this evening. The Weston repeater is temporarily off-the-air until the new crystals arrive.

The final picture of the MMRA network is described on the recently updated MMRA webpage: http://www.mmra.org/repeaters

I apologize for any confusion, please let the club know if you have any questions.

73,
Bob, K1IW

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Hurricane Katrina Disaster Relief Coordination Message #5

Hello to all….

….Plan to hold up to 3,000 Evacuees at Otis Air Force Base on Cape Cod Massachusetts now on hold. Cape Cod Red Cross Securing Activation for the moment and Cape Cod ARES No Longer On Stand-By….
….Email Sent to ARRL National Headquarters Concerning Possible ARESMAT Deployment Plans….

Late last night, Frank O’Laughlin-WQ1O, Cape Cod ARES District Emergency Coordnator and Red Cross Communications Offier and Ron Trainor-KC8CEV reported that the plan to house 3,000 Evacuees at the Otis Air Force Base in Cape Cod, Massachusetts is now on hold. Cape Cod Red Cross has currently secured their activation for the moment and Cape Cod ARES is no longer on stand-by. Frank-WQ1O has delivered the following message to his Cape Cod ARES group, the Falmouth Amateur Radio Association, who offered support in this operation and the Eastern Massachusetts section:

By the time you read this, you will know that the plan to relocate evacuees has likely been suspended. It appears that the evacuees would like to stay closer to their home in the South. I was impressed by the outpouring of support from the local amateur community for this endeavor. I want to take this time to publicly thank the Falmouth Amateur Radio Association and its good members for the offers of logistical and human resources to support for the operation. It was great to see the swiftness of the response for the standby activation. I also wish to thank the Eastern MA Section Staff and the Cape&Islands ARES personnel for their continuing mission of emergency communications response. It was great to hear from Bob Courtemanche and Ralph Swenson for their “heads up” on the situation with offers of assistance. We came together as we would for any emergency that may face our area. My thanks to all of you!

We will keep everyone posted if this plan changes again. An article concerning this suspension of evacuees coming to Otis is available at the link below:

http://www.boston.com/news/weather/articles/2005/09/07/plans_to_airlift_evacuees_on_hold/

Concerning actual ARES deployment to the affected area, an email has been sent to NN1N-David Patton, special assistant to the ARRL CEO and Greg Sarratt-W4OZK to see if an ARESMAT from the Eastern Massachusetts ARES section is required and will follow the ARESMAT concept. An update will be posted once we receive a response from either Greg or David. Below are some links on the ARRL web site updating the national response to this incident:

http://www.arrl.org/news/stories/2005/09/06/100/?nc=1
http://www.arrl.org/katrina.html

Those are the latest updates concerning Hurricane the Hurricane Katrina disaster relief effort. Below is pertinent information from past coordination messages for the sake of completeness, another update will be posted as new information becomes available:

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:
http://www.arrl.org

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:

http://katrina.ab2m.net/

Those that have already signed up via the email address of katrina@arrl.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:
http://www.bostonredcross.org/Hurricane

The Salvation Army also has status information and headlines via their web site. That link also appears below:
http://www.use.salvationarmy.org/mas

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:
http://www.arrl.org/FandES/field/ares-el/index.html?issue=2005-09-03

For those interested in signing up for the ARES E-letter, please see the link below:
http://www.arrl.org/FandES/field/ares-el/about.html#get

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.
Respectfully Submitted,

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: rmacedo@rcn.com
http://users.rcn.com/rmacedo
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Hurricane Katrina Disaster Relief Effort Coordination Message #4

Hello to all….

….3,000 Evacuees headed to Otis Air Force Base on Cape Cod, Massachusetts. Cape Cod Red Cross now Activated with Cape Cod ARES on stand-by….
….No significant changes on deploying to the affected area….

As the media has reported, Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney has announced that 3,000 evacuees are being sent to Otis Air Force Base. Given this development, Cape Cod ARES District Emergency Coordinator, Frank O’Laughlin-WQ1O, has reported that the Cape Cod Red Cross is now fully activated with Cape Cod ARES now on stand-by to support communications needs as required. The air base has very strict security provisions so only a handful of Cape Cod ARES personnel will be allowed on the base only. Beyond tactical communications between the Cape Cod Red Cross chapter and Otis Air Force Base, there will be little need for Amateurs to actually deploy to Cape Cod, however, depending on the needs of the evacuees, there is the potential for Amateurs in ARES and NTS to get involved with health and welfare traffic for the evacuees to loved ones that they may have lost contact with during the move. Again, this will largely depend on the need of the evacuees. This is being worked by the ARES leadership and Massachusetts State RACES Radio Officer, Tom Kinahan, N1CPE. If this need develops, updates will be posted as required. Again, It is not clear at this time if this need even exists. Given that phones and other forms of technology work here, this may not be needed but there certainly could be limitations on the amount of phones etc. available at the facility so Amateur Radio may provide a parallel path to get messages back to loved ones. Frank-WQ1O will keep the ARES staff informed of any needs and Tom-N1CPE will keep us informed working with the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency if there is a need for such messaging.

Over the past 2 days, 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. 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. Yesterday, Fox-25 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. 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.

Concerning actual deployment to the affected area, we have received little information other than what has been provided from the ARRL National Web Site. An attempt will be made to contact ARRL/ARES leadership in Alabama, where it appears they are staging personnel currently. If further information becomes available, it will be passed on via this coordination message.

Below is the applicable text of Coordination Message #4 for coordination purposes:

If you look at the national web site, at the following link:
http://www.arrl.org

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:

http://katrina.ab2m.net/

Those that have already signed up via the email address of katrina@arrl.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:
http://www.bostonredcross.org/Hurricane

The Salvation Army also has status information and headlines via their web site. That link also appears below:
http://www.use.salvationarmy.org/mas

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!

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.
Respectfully Submitted,

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: rmacedo@rcn.com
http://users.rcn.com/rmacedo
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Hurricane Katrina Disaster Relief Coordination Message #3

Hello to all….

The following is another update on Hurricane Katrina Disaster Relief based on updates received from various sources within the past 24 hours. There have been some slight changes in the sign-up for deployment based on an update posted to the ARRL web site some time yesterday afternoon and there has been further information provided on the Massachusetts Bay Red Cross web site. These updates are being incorporated into this note with some of the text and information in the previous coordination message. We will begin this coordination message to discuss the updates on the ARRL web site.

If you look at the national web site, at the following link:
http://www.arrl.org

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:

http://katrina.ab2m.net/

Those that have already signed up via the email address of katrina@arrl.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.

As of this morning, I’ve not heard from Erin Sarris, Associate Director of Preparedness and Response concerning support from Eastern Massachusetts ARES for Massachusetts Bay Red Cross. If I hear anything, an update will be provided via these coordination messages. There remains the potential that we may be doing remote support for this catastrophic disaster and that support could come in several forms along with the potential of deployment to in or near the affected area. Given that the situation is fluid, I’d ask all ARES personnel to continue monitoring these coordination messages for further details.

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:
http://bostonredcross.org/Hurricane%20Katrina.htm

The Salvation Army also has status information and headlines via their web site. That link also appears below:
http://www.use.salvationarmy.org/mas

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 will be checking in with our NTS leadership on the status of health and welfare traffic into and out of the affected area and update the next coordination message with that information.

From the last coordination message, the ARES E-letter can provide some excellent information on this situation:

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:
http://www.arrl.org/FandES/field/ares-el/index.html?issue=2005-09-03

For those interested in signing up for the ARES E-letter, please see the link below:
http://www.arrl.org/FandES/field/ares-el/about.html#get

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!

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 causedby one of the worst natural disasters in the country’s history.
Respectfully Submitted,

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: rmacedo@rcn.com
http://users.rcn.com/rmacedo
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Hurricane Katrina Disaster Relief Coordination Message #2

ARRL Eastern MA Section Emergency Coordinator Rob Macedo, KD1CY writes:

From the ARRL web site, new information has been received concerning the potential for deployment for Hurricane Katrina disaster relief. We’ve also received some information from Mass. Bay Red Cross on possible plans for activation of their Rapid Action Team. Given these developments, it is time to update everyone once again on the current Hurricane Katrina Disaster Relief effort. [Full story]

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Hurricane Katrina Disaster Relief Coordination Message #2

Hello to all….

From the ARRL web site, new information has been received concerning the potential for deployment for Hurricane Katrina disaster relief. We’ve also received some information from Mass. Bay Red Cross on possible plans for activation of their Rapid Action Team. Given these developments, it is time to update everyone once again on the current Hurricane Katrina Disaster Relief effort.

Friday showed some rays of hope in a sea of despair in the affected areas. The first significant convoy of US National Guard troops arrived in the area passing out food and water along with a fleet of buses to move affected people out of the area and getting supplies to those people until they are moved out of the area. National Guard troops are also gradually bringing back a sense of order to New Orleans as well. While this is occurring, there is still a tremendous amount of work to be done and thousands people remain in New Orleans to be rescued. The media continues extensive coverage of the situation to keep the nation informed.

Over the past 24 hours, we’ve seen some developments of significance that I wanted everyone to be aware of and also provide important instructions and reiterate some of the thoughts in my last coordination message. Let’s start off with a posting on the ARRL web site.

If you look at the national web site, at the following link: http://www.arrl.org

You will now see that there is a call for Amateur Radio Emergency Communication volunteers for the affected area and the ARRL is asking for emails to be sent to Katrina@arrl.org so that you can be considered for deployment. You are asked to provide your 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, if you decide to send an email to that address the ARRL provided, 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.

The second update that I wanted to provide is that the Massachusetts Bay Red Cross Rapid Action Team (RAT) is considering becoming active this weekend for supporting relief operations. There are no further details available at this time. While it is unclear where and how Eastern Massachusetts ARES can help at present, I’ve sent a note to the Associate Director of Preparedness and Response for Disaster Services, Erin Sarris, who posted the note on RAT team availability, to see if Eastern Massachusetts ARES can assist in anyway. Updates will be posted via email and given to your ARES DEC’s when they become available. This maybe an excellent way for our section to contribute to the effort remotely. I will also be contacting our NTS leadership to get an update on the status of health and welfare traffic out of the affected area and how ARES can support that effort from here as required and if there are updates on that situation, I will pass that along to everyone.

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:
http://www.arrl.org/FandES/field/ares-el/index.html?issue=2005-09-03

For those interested in signing up for the ARES E-letter, please see the link below:
http://www.arrl.org/FandES/field/ares-el/about.html#get

I plan on leaving coordination message #1 posted on the ARES web site along with this message so that people can follow the history of communication on this effort and pick up on any previous information that will be useful to them in this effort. I will be away from the PC for much of this afternoon and evening. I will be monitoring emails for much of this morning through early afternoon closely and can have limited access to email later this afternoon and evening. 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.
Respectfully Submitted,

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: rmacedo@rcn.com
http://users.rcn.com/rmacedo
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Hurricane Katrina ARES/RACES Disaster Relief Coordination Message

Hello to all….

With the impact of Hurricane Katrina becoming one of the most horrific natural disaster’s in United States history, it is evident that the recovery effort will become one of potentially national significance lasting months and not weeks. Given that is the case, I will begin posting coordination messages similar to ones that I post for SKYWARN but detailing the disaster relief effort and what Eastern Massachusetts ARES is doing to be prepared to support the affected area if called upon by the appropriate leadership in Mississippi, Alabama, Louisiana and now South Texas given that thousands of people are now being sheltered in Texas.

Contact was made with Louisiana ARES Section Emergency Coordinator Gary Stratton-K5GLS this morning via email. At this time, they are in a “hold mode” concerning any outside support. They are awaiting word from Louisiana Homeland Security on when they can begin their deployments. Until that time, we have been asked to stand-by and await any further instructions. In that same note, I offered a “remote support” component from our ARES organization to support their operations. This support included net controls on HF, net controls utilizing VoIP and any relay stations to take traffic that is out of the affected area and destined for our region in the form of health and welfare traffic. At this time, they are so busy with emergency and priority traffic, that they are focused on that piece of their work at this time. Health and Welfare traffic has been halted into the region at this time. It is not yet known when Health & Welfare traffic will be facilitated from the affected area to the areas where loved ones are located across the United States.

As we watch the visions of despair, violence and in parallel the hope the disaster relief efforts provide, I’d like to remind all in the ARES community of the following:

1.) Please do not self-deploy to this area. It is a significantly dangerous and life-threatening situation. As much as we all want to help, the best thing to do right now is to wait until the situation stabilizes enough so that help can be properly provided. We all want to be heroes as we as Amateur Radio Operators have a knack for wanting to help our communities. The best help we can provide right now is to remain calm and patient. When the section’s affected is ready for our support, whether it be remote support or the support of a team to deploy to the area, they responsible leaders of the affected ARRL sections will call for us.

2.) Some Amateurs may have seen the database for Hams to sign up for message handling and deployment. Please do not sign up through that database. If you are interested in supporting the operation whether it be through remote message handling or deployment to the affected area, please let your DEC or myself know and we will be prepared to utilize you in the event of remote support or actual deployment.

3.) We must be careful not to overextend ourselves to support these ARRL sections affected by Hurricane Katrina. Hurricane Season continues and the peak is not till mid-September. It is still conceivable that we could be affected by a hurricane in our section and we will need to be ready to protect and support our communities. Also, let us not forget the continuous threat that Al Qaeda imposes on our homeland as well. There remains threats to our area so we need to balance supporting this horrific disaster with making sure our region is properly covered if a weather related, terrorist related or other such incident occurs in our region.

The President of the ARRL, Jim Haynie, W5JBP, sent out a powerful and excellent message to the Amateur Radio Community concerning being ready to help the region. A link to this article is provided below:
http://www.arrl.org/news/stories/2005/09/01/2/?nc=1

There are several frequencies active handling emergency and priority traffic. Those that would like to monitor the nets are welcome to do so but please do not interrupt traffic on the nets. Stand-by and monitor the nets and you will get a sense of what our Amateurs in the affected area are going through. The HF frequencies are listed below and were mentioned in the ARRL article on the web site:

West Gulf ARES Emergency Net:
7.285 MHz Days and 3.873 MHz nights LSB on
both frequencies.

SATERN Net: 14.265 USB

The next step from an Eastern Massachusetts ARES perspective will be to offer support to Mass. Bay Red Cross and Salvation Army to see if there is anything that can be done from a communications perspective working through our local relief agencies. As things develop, I will pass the information along to everyone.

Donations for people in the affected area can be made through the Red Cross and Salvation Army. Various work places may have also set up fundraising finds through their companies.

Please contact me or your ARES DEC with any questions or if you want to volunteer for any type of remote support or actual deployment if actual deployment becomes necessary in the coming weeks. Thanks to all of you for your continued support of ARES!
Respectfully Submitted,

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: rmacedo@rcn.com
http://users.rcn.com/rmacedo
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A message from The ARRL President

ARRL flag
Statement from ARRL President Jim Haynie, W5JBP

My fellow Amateur Radio Operators:

There is no doubt that the recovery efforts following Hurricane Katrina will be the largest and longest emergency actions that hams have ever undertaken. It will also be one of the hardest, not simply due to the large areas involved, but also because many of us have friends and relatives directly impacted by this catastrophe. For them, and all the people of the Gulf region, we ask divine aid and comfort in this time of sorrows.

But we are also hardened and resolved to turn this event into one of the most glorious opportunities to show the unique attributes of ham radio–it works! You know that. We can again show the world that we have the best trained, most ingenious and dedicated ARES and RACES operators ever in history. We have the attention of the world press, and we will show what ham radio can do.

This will not happen in a week, not even in a month. The recovery efforts will be drawn out over numerous states and are expected to go well into the winter. Hams will grow weary and need relief and replacement from all across America. The ARRL, the national association for Amateur Radio, is already working on strategic plans to make it possible for these volunteers to come. Our goal is to provide the SECs with all the support we can muster and allow them to do their jobs.

There is a curious coincidence in the fact that the United Technologies grant, which allowed the ARRL to train so many thousands of hams in emergency communications, ends this week. Now we are seeing the results of that effort. Disciplined hams, using correct procedures have already saved many lives, and will save hundreds more by providing timely, accurate and critical communications to our served agencies. To the students, mentors, organizers, funders and teachers of those courses we can only say, “Well done!”

I know many people would like to move now. Please don’t. I know many of you want to enter the fray, come to the coast and get involved. Please, not yet. Instead, get yourself ready. Refresh your skills and knowledge of protocols and procedures. Once the agencies are able to complete a preliminary needs assessment, we will know who is needed and where. For now, the area is simply too dangerous and no one is being allowed in. Transportation and logistics, including volunteer groups coming in, must be done in an orderly manner or we may only add to the chaos and confusion. Information and coordination for such a historically large response is being developed and will be made available soon. But for now, work through your SECs and follow their lead. I would also ask that you be professional and disciplined whenever checking into an HF net. Net control is a difficult job at best, so be respectful. If you have traffic fine, but if not, please stand by.

There is already no doubt that when the history of this event is written, the role of Amateur Radio will be one of honor. Unpaid volunteers who came through for their country and communities when all other systems failed or were overwhelmed. By working together and mutually supporting each other, we can perhaps give these very dark days a small glint of glory. Let these be the days that hams, decades from now, remember with pride. Together we can–and will–make it happen because, after all, we are hams.

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