Hello to all….
First of all, I would like to mention that our Eastern Massachusetts ARES Stand-by for the Ice Storm and subsequent winter storms has now ended. While the storm currently in progress, may cause strong winds and wind damage across portions of the Southeast part of the Eastern Massachusetts section, it is not expected to cause issues significant enough to require ARES support except to support SKYWARN reporting per the SKYWARN reporting criteria.
I would like to take a moment to wish everyone in RACES, ARES, SKYWARN, MARS and in EMCOMM in general a Merry Christmas, Happy New Year and Happy Holiday season. We had another year of successes in public service thanks to all of your efforts and I look forward to working with many of you again in 2009.
We completed several EMCOMM Workshops over the area including an Advanced Workshop in April in Walpole, Massachusetts, a basic workshop in Concord, Massachusetts and another basic workshop in Peabody, Massachusetts. The workshops were very successful and have continued to promote an interest in EMCOMM across the region. The Cape Cod ARES group has conducted a workshop over a course of weeknights for several weeks for CERT Teams that have recently gotten their Ham Radio licenses.
We had a very successful hurricane exercise in early August where we had voice command and tactical nets on HF, Echolink/IRLP and 2 Meter/440 voice with traffic flow between the nets bolted together using Winlink. It went extremely well and a complete report was sent to ARRL Headquarters and various state emergency management teams. It will be posted on the web by the start of the new year.
Many in ARES, RACES and MARS supported SKYWARN in an unusually active year that featured the most active summer severe weather season in years. The Ice Storm also resulted in a significant level of support for SKYWARN and for local, regional and state Emergency Management. An Amateur Radio Emergency Services Mutual Aid Team (ARESMAT) was deployed for the first time since the 9/11/01 terrorist attacks and was the largest ARESMAT deployment since those terrorist attacks.
Thanks to all of you for your support and cooperation over the course of 2008 and I look forward to working with you in 2009. Merry Christmas, Happy New Year and Happy Holidays to all!!
Eastern Massachusetts ARES Section Emergency Coordinator
ARES SKYWARN Coordinator for NWS Taunton Massachusetts