The Eastern MA Amateur Radio Emergency Service® (ARES) will conduct a Simulated Emergency Test on November 14, 2020 from 10 AM to 12 Noon (setup to start at 9 AM where needed) to test its capability in establishing communications with stations inside and outside of the section. Operation “Fall Fury” will attempt to build upon the lessons learned from past operational exercises. This SET is being done in coordination with a Red Cross national exercise also being held on Saturday 11/14/20.
The exercise scenario involves a fictional Category 1 hurricane which strikes MA/CT/RI as a hybrid coastal storm, battering Cape Cod and the Islands with winds ranging from 90-100 MPH. Eventually, hundreds of thousands of people in Eastern Massachusetts are left without power as the rain rapidly changes to heavy, wet snow.
“This exercise guideline is deliberately broad and generic in nature. ARES groups are free to adapt this scenario and conduct their exercise as needed for their group,” writes District Emergency Coordinator Frank O’Laughlin, WQ1O.
“This is also a great opportunity for new Amateur Radio Operators, whether they are involved in ARES or not, to check into nets, provide simulated information and exercise traffic, or just check in and learn how nets work and what ARES can do during an actual event. This includes the National Weather Service SKYWARN component of ARES” writes Rob Macedo, KD1CY, Eastern Massachusetts ARES Section Emergency Coordinator.
With the ongoing COVID-19 situation in MA, it will be unlikely that groups will be able to operate at EOCs and other municipal locations. Therefore any activation of shelters will be simulated by role play. It is likely that most of the operations involved in this exercise will utilize home stations.
Some exercise objectives include:
• Simulate the activation of shelters in your area;
• Simulate the activation of EOC stations in your area;
• Establish and conduct a tactical net on simplex 2m FM/ repeater for your group;
• Simulate contact with any Town EOC RACES stations;
• Establish contact with other ARES districts where possible;
• Establish an HF 75 meter voice net for all of MA (and potentially other areas);
• Pass an NTS type message on 2 meters VHF and/or 440 MHz;
• Pass a SKYWARN and/or tactical message on voice 2 meters and on the HF net;
• Optional components of the exercise to pass information digitally via Winlink and NBEMS (Narrow Band Emergency Messaging System)
For full details, see the “Eastern MA Simulated Emergency Test 2020 Scenario and Guidelines” document at https://ema.arrl.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/11/EasternMA-ARES-SET-11-14-20.pdf.