Amateurs and public safety officials met in Burlington on October 30, 2019 to discuss emergency communications and preparedness for the Town, according to Section Emergency Coordinator Rob Macedo, KD1CY. “We had a successful meeting and presentation [attended by] a lieutenant from the Burlington Police Department, the Fire Chief/Director of Emergency Management, and the Director of Burlington’s Medical Reserve Corps along with several hams,” said Macedo. “The amateurs will work with the town officials to help establish strong contact with the local police, fire, and the Burlington Emergency Management Agency to assist with community events, hold exercises, and reach out to other amateurs in the community at the appropriate time.”
“It was a well informed and very educational meeting on emergency communication and preparedness,” remarked Burlington resident and Quannapowitt Radio Association president Don Melanson, W1DM. “I believed it opened everyone’s eyes on just what Amateur Radio operators’ skills are. I have suggested using hams for some of the local events to start, like the town parades, car shows and other events for exposure and training.”
QRA member and Middleton resident Ron Draper WA1QZK, also spoke to the group about RACES, FEMA, and ARES involvement during emergencies.
Currently Burlington is looking for residents in the town to volunteer for community service for hazardous waste day, blood drives, flu clinics, and other events. The Town will kick off a Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) beginning in early 2020, according to the police department’s spokesperson. Melanson hopes a large number of hams will become involved in the CERT effort.