MEMA Hosts Unified Command Center (UCC) for Both Marathons

Hello to all….

The following announcement came from Massachusetts State RACES Radio officer, Tom Kinhan-N1CPE from MEMA Public Information Officer, Peter Judge:

THE COMMONWEALTH OF MASSACHUSETTS
EXECUTIVE OFFICE OF PUBLIC SAFETY AND SECURITY
_____________________________

MASSACHUSETTS EMERGENCY MANAGEMENT AGENCY
400 Worcester Road Framingham, MA 01702-5399
Tel: 508-820-2000 Fax: 508-820-2030
Website: www.mass.gov/mema

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE CONTACT: Peter Judge, MEMA PIO
April 18, 2008 (508) 820-2002

MEMA HOSTS UCC FOR BOTH MARATHONS
SEOC To Be Activated For Olympic Trials & Boston Marathon

FRAMINGHAM, MA – The Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency (MEMA) Headquarters in Framingham will be the site of the Unified Command Center (UCC) for Sunday’s U.S. Women’s Olympic Marathon Trials and Monday’s 112th running of the Boston Marathon. The UCC, located at the State Emergency Operations Center (SEOC), will be activated and fully operational on Sunday, April 20th at 7:00AM for the Olympic Trials and again on Monday at 7:00AM, remaining operational until at least 7:00PM on Monday, April 21st. This is the seventh straight year that these extensive steps have been taken to ensure the safety and security of participants and spectators along the 26.2-mile course.

The purpose of the UCC is to bring together key organizations for decision-making, communication and support. Medical issues are a key focus again this year, as demonstrated by the detailed planning of this year’s Boston Marathon Medical Subcommittee with extensive outreach to the Commonwealth’s medical community, area hospitals and private ambulance services. The Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency, the Boston Athletic Association Medical Team and the Massachusetts Department of Public Health helped raise medical preparedness and its coordination to an unprecedented level by again co-sponsoring the annual Boston Marathon Medical Seminar, which was held at Newton-Wellesley Hospital. Over 200 volunteer medical personnel attended this year’s event.

Over 80 individuals from the local communities involved with the Boston Marathon, as well as State and Federal Public Safety agencies, organizations and departments are expected to be represented at the SEOC on Patriots’ Day. The UCC monitors the ‘Big Picture’ and rapidly and efficiently responds to situations as they arise. The UCC, through MEMA’s WebEOC technology has the capability of displaying real time messages, weather data, maps, and logs, exchanging information to users both inside and outside the UCC. The UCC had dedicated hard-line telephones and access to 800 MHz, Public Safety radios, backup amateur radios (RACES) and numerous types of wireless communication to support the event and ensure immediate two-way communication. The Incident Command System (ICS) will again be utilized to organize and coordinate activities in the UCC and the field.

The Department of Public Health will again coordinate the use of an innovative ‘runner/patient tracking system’, utilizing barcodes on the runner’s bibs and scores of hand-held devises along the course to track everything from the location of any runner or spectator receiving medical assistance or transport to the number and severity of medical issues that are occurring along the course. The Boston Marathon offers a first ‘real-life’ event utilizing this technology that presents numerous potential benefits during a Mass Casualty Emergency.

Key liaisons in the UCC will represent Police, Fire, Emergency Medical Service and Emergency Management departments from the municipalities which host the event – Hopkinton, Ashland, Framingham, Natick, Wellesley, Newton, Brookline, and Boston. The various other agencies and organizations in the UCC, under the leadership of MEMA Director Don Boyce, include the Executive Office of Public Safety, Boston Athletic Association, MA State Police, MA National Guard, MA Department of Public Health, MA Department of Fire Services, MA Bay Transit Authority, MA Turnpike Authority, MA Highway Department, Federal Aviation Administration, Civil Air Patrol, Federal Bureau of Investigation, American Red Cross, RACES/ARES (amateur radio volunteers), local hospitals and private ambulance services.

WHAT: 2008 U.S. Women’s Olympic Marathon Trials UCC
WHEN: Sunday, April 20, 2008, 7:00AM to at least Mid-day

WHAT: 2008 Boston Marathon UCC
WHEN: Monday, April 21, 2008, 7:00AM to at least 7:00PM
WHERE: The SEOC located at MEMA Headquarters, 400 Worcester Road (Rte. 9) Framingham, MA

WHY: To ensure the safety & security of Marathon participants & spectators

The Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency (MEMA) is the state agency responsible for coordinating federal, state, local, voluntary and private resources during emergencies and disasters in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. MEMA provides leadership to: develop plans for effective response to all hazards, disasters or threats; train emergency personnel to protect the public; provide information to the citizenry; and assist individuals, families, businesses and communities to mitigate against, prepare for, and respond to and recover from emergencies, both natural and man made. For additional information about MEMA and All Hazard Preparedness, go to www.mass.gov/mema.

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BAA Marathon Call for Volunteers

BAA logoThe Marathon Amateur Radio Communications (MARC) consortium is looking for ham radio operators to assist at the 2008 Boston Marathon. The Marathon is held annually on Patriots Day, this year that’s Monday, April 21. We need people to provide communications is support of three areas:

START LINE (Hopkinton)
Runner & observer safety & security, parking lots, VIP escorts

COURSE (Hopkinton to Boston)
First Aid & Water station coordination

FINISH LINE (Boston)
First Aid, safety & security

If you are interested in any of these positions, please visit the MARC website to sign up:

http://marc.amateur-radio.net

73,
Bob – K1IW
MARC Recruitment Coordinator 1 1 1

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Massachusetts Cell Phone Bill H-4477 Passes House

Hello to all….

The following is an update from Shawn O’Donnell-K3HI on Massachusetts Cell Phone Bill H-4477, which passed the State House of Representatives on Wednesday.

The Massachusetts House of Representatives passed H-4477 today by a vote of 107-47. The members passed several amendments to the bill before the final vote and some encouraging news…

I have been forwarded a message from a staff member of Representative Hynes (see below.) Representative Hynes’s amendment was indeed approved by the House. Pending confirmation of the precise text of the amendment, we can declare a tentative victory.

If we have succeeded, our next order of business is a measured campaign to ensure that our exemption survives Senate deliberations.

–Shawn

Thanks to Gordy Bello, K1GB, for forwarding the message from the State House.

At 6:01 PM -0500 1/23/08, bello wrote:
From: Verseckes, Michael (HOU) [mailto:Michael.Verseckes@state.ma.us]
Sent: Wednesday, January 23, 2008 5:13 PM
To: gge1@comcast.net
Subject: amateur radio

Hi Gordon,

My name is Mike Verseckes and I’m an aide to Rep. Frank Hynes.

I wanted to let you know that the amendment Rep. Hynes filed that would exempt ham radio operators from House Bill 4477 was adopted and the bill was engrossed today. So now it’s on to the Senate where they should take it up some time soon.

Thanks for contacting us.

Mike

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NESMC UHF and PavePaws Update

Hello to all….

There have been a lot of questions on UHF and PavePaws that have come up recently. Lou Harris-N1UEC, NESMC UHF Coordinator has provided the following write up and the write up has been posted on the ema.arrl.org web site at the following link:

http://ema.arrl.org/article.php?sid=1131

Hope this helps those who have had questions on this item.

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 #: 1-800-445-2588 Ext.: 72929 (8 AM-5 PM)
Email Address: rmacedo@rcn.com
http://users.rcn.com/rmacedo
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Eastern Mass ARES & Massachusetts SATERN in Local Statement of Understanding

Hello to all….

Eastern Massachusetts ARES and Massachusetts SATERN have signed a Local Statement of Understanding (LSOU) through the end of 2008 announcing mutual cooperation in exercises and support if disaster strikes and SATERN needs Amateur Radio support from ARES. The agreement was worked through Frank Murphy-N1DHW, Massachusetts SATERN Coordinator, Joe Fratto-N1RLO, Massachusetts SATERN Training Officer and SATERN’S ARES/MARS/SHARES/APCO liaison, and Bill Foley-KB1GLF Salvation Army of Massachusetts Emergency Disaster Services Coordinator.

The agreement was worked out in November 2006 with Eastern Massachusetts ARES Section Emergency Coordinator, Rob Macedo-KD1CY and Metro Boston ARES District Emergency Coordinator, Blake Haskell-K1BTH. The agreement, approved by Dick Montgomery-N3DV, the Salvation Army SATERN Eastern Territory Coordinator, was signed off at the end of 2006 with a signed copy distributed early in 2007. SATERN-Boston (MaSATERN) has participated in several ARES exercises since 2001, as well as ARES Nets on the MMRA Repeater system under their call sign W1MSA. MaSATERN is also a NavyMarine MARS Club Station, call NNN0RNT.

The LSOU is in line with the national MOU between ARES and Salvation Army and institutes and reinforces that agreement at a more local level. Eastern Massachusetts ARES is very pleased to work with Massachusetts SATERN across the Eastern Massachusetts section.

ARES members are asked to please be prepared to support Massachusetts SATERN when required for exercises and actual diaster related incidents. Thanks to all of you for your continued support of Eastern Massachusetts 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 #: 1-800-445-2588 Ext.: 72929 (8 AM-5 PM)
Email Address: rmacedo@rcn.com
http://users.rcn.com/rmacedo
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Training and Contact Information Updates for the ARES Database

Hello to all….

As we start 2007, the Eastern Massachusetts ARES staff is looking to assure that contact information is updated and that if you’ve taken training classes that the information is included in the database. I’ve also recently obtained feedback that its hard to find the online registration form and database page so on the Eastern Massachusetts ARES web site at http://ares.ema.arrl.org we have made a link right on the main menu that takes you directly to the registration form and database page. On the Main Menu, it is labeled Eastern Mass ARES Registration form and database. This will take you to the page where new ARES folks can register and existing ARES members can update their information. You can also reach the page by clicking Join Us on the Main Menu of the Eastern Mass. ARES web site.

Please take the time to make sure your contact information is correct. Also, if you have taken training and its not in your ARES record or you have started a training record and have not updated your record recently, please take the time to do so. Having an updated training record can tell your ARES EC, DEC, and SEC that you are keeping up on ICS, SKYWARN, Emergency Communications and preparedess training and remain active in the ARES program.

When we first unveiled the database, we did a one-time entry of all folks we knew were in the Eastern Mass. ARES program from rosters that ARES EC’s and DEC’s collected and from the old Access Database that we once utilized. When that occurred, an email was sent to all we had registered so that they could update their information and change their password. If you are a member of ARES and never received this notification, we welcome you to re-register and put in your information including your training and appreciate your patience in reentering the information for us. This database should prevent us from losing this information in the future.

Thank you for your continued support of Eastern Massachusetts 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 #: 1-800-445-2588 Ext.: 72929 (8 AM-5 PM)
Email Address: rmacedo@rcn.com
http://users.rcn.com/rmacedo
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Merry Christmas, Happy New Year, and Happy Holidays

Hello to all….

On behalf of the entire Eastern Massachusetts ARES staff, I’d like to take this opportunity to wish everyone a Merry Christmas, a Happy New Year and a Happy and safe holiday season to those celebrating other holidays that are occurring during this time of year. It was another active year for ARES, RACES and SKYWARN and I want to thank everyone for putting in a tremendous effort in 2006 and look forward to working with everyone in 2007.

We conducted another successful Emergency Communications Workshop in Walpole, Massachusetts in early Apil 2006. In addition to that workshop, weeknight workshops held once per week for a period of 6-8 weeks were conducted in both Taunton, Massachusetts and Falmouth Massachusetts targeting specific emergency communication teams in those regions. We thank those that attended and assisted in those workshops.

The most significant ARES/RACES response in recent memory was executed during the May Floods of 2006 in Northeast Massachusetts. Terry Stader-KA8SCP, Region One RACES Radio Officer and a team of roughly a dozen Amateur Radio Operators, manned the Region One MEMA Headquarters in Tewksbury for 5 days assisting with communications not just via Amateur Radio but with other means of communications for MEMA. Eastern Massachusetts ARES supported SKYWARN operations providing several hundred reports of flooding, rainfall and significant impact to life and property. The American Red Cross of Mass. Bay and Northeast Massachusetts utilized close to 2 dozen Amateurs over a period of three days for damage assessment and relief operations in Northeast Massachusetts. This was a tremendous job by those involved in these efforts.

Through the efforts of Phil McNamara-N1XTB and contributions from all of you, we now have an Eastern Massachusetts ARES online registration form and database that brings us forward in terms of knowing who is available for emergency communications needs when required. Phil’s superb technical expertise and many months of efforts has provided a superb system that will be able to be used for many years to come.

This year brought a tremendous amount of severe thunderstorm activity to the region with the highest number of severe reports received in over 10 years. Several reports from SKYWARN spotters resulted in timely warnings being issued for an area along with a much better understanding of what was happening at the ground resulting in the protection of life and property. Several exercises and other smaller events were completed in 2006 including the annual WX4NHC Communications Test, the Simulated Emergency Test and the MEMA yearly hurricane exercise and the Monthly ARES and RACES nets continued on a regular basis.

Thanks to all of you for your efforts in 2006 and we look forward to working with all of you in 2007. Merry Christmas, Happy New Year and Happy Holidays to all of you!

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 #: 1-800-445-2588 Ext.: 72929 (8 AM-5 PM)
Email Address: rmacedo@rcn.com
http://users.rcn.com/rmacedo
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Reminder: Monthly Eastern Massachusetts ARES Net for December

Hello to all….

A reminder that the monthly ARES Net for December is rapidly approaching.

The monthly ARES Net for December is Monday December 4th, 2006, at 8:30 PM on the MMRA Repeater system. This is after the RACES Nets earlier in the evening.

Make the first Monday of the month, “Emergency Communications Night” and check into your local RACES Net and then check into the ARES Net on the MMRA Repeater System. We look forward to your participation and remember, we are always looking for Net Controls to run the ARES Net.

We will have several interesting announcements for the net that evening and we look forward to everyone’s participation. Updates will be posted via email and on the Eastern Massachusetts ARES Web Site at http://ares.ema.arrl.org

Thanks 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 #: 1-800-445-2588 Ext.: 72929 (8 AM-5 PM)
Email Address: rmacedo@rcn.com
http://users.rcn.com/rmacedo
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Eastern Massachusetts ARES Web Site Additional Updates

Hello to all….

We have posted additional updates to the Eastern Massachusetts ARES web site. Those updates are as follows:

1.) Updated the EMa ARES Overview section under important past events through the September 2006 timeframe.

2.) Have added a link to the Boxboro 2006 SEC Forum put together by Eastern Massachusetts ARES with cooperation from the Western Massachusetts, Rhode Island and Connecticut sections.

Further updates to the Eastern Massachusetts ARES web site will be made as required. Thanks for your continued support of Eastern Massachusetts 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 #: 1-800-445-2588 Ext.: 72929 (8 AM-5 PM)
Email Address: rmacedo@rcn.com
http://users.rcn.com/rmacedo
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Preparedness Efforts Including Eastern Mass ARES Web Site Updates

Hello to all….

With September being National Preparedness Month, the Eastern Massachusetts ARES staff is working to tighten our preparedness across the section. Some examples include:

-Frank O’Laughlin, WQ1O, has been doing the Emergency Communications Workshop weekly for the Falmouth ARES team.

-Jim Palmer, KB1KQW, North Shore ARES EC, has started a discussion topic on backup net controls and liaisons on the North Shore ARES email list.

Early last week, I heard from Joe Heck-K1LBG, who is the Red Cross Communications Officer. He mentioned to me that the Eastern Massachusetts ARES Organizationl Chart was out of date. That was updated and fixed last week. Understanding that was the case, it was time to go through the entire web site and update and clean up old/outdated information and other items on the web site. The site should now be very up to date with some fresh content. Those updates include the following:

1.) Eastern Massachusetts ARES Staff organizational Chart is now updated.

2.) The Comprehensive Frequency Listing is updated with PL Tones for the Region 1 and 2 RACES Repeaters. The RACES manual and frequency listing is currently under revision but the information there reflects the last good information given on RACES frequencies.

3.) The Comprehensive Frequency Listing now directs you to a link for the latest SKYWARN frequency information.

4.) The Ema ARES Membership Policy was updated to direct new and existing ARES applicants to the Join Us link while retaining the old Word Document Application.

5.) The Field Day link was updated for the events that occurred in 2006.

6.) The IRLP/EchoLink section was updated to reflect how they are utilized for Emergency Communications.

7.) Updated the Voice Nets section to reflect the correct timeframe for the Monthly Eastern Mass. ARES Net.

8.) Updated the Workshops section to accurately reflect how we are running our workshops.

9.) The Interoperability link’s formatting was tough to read and has been cleaned up and fixed.

10.) The Massachusetts Statewide Hurricane Hope Drill After Action Report has been uploaded to the web site.

11.) We have added a section on past information and PR from the May 14th, 2006 Floods from the ARRL, the ARES web site and from the North Shore Radio Association (NSRA).

12.) Updated the calendar to include various weekly nets and the Eastern Massachusetts Monthly ARES Net. Removed the scheduled events link from the right side of the web site.

These are all the updates have been made to the web site to improve preparedness and readiness within the Eastern Massachusetts ARES/ARRL section.

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 #: 1-800-445-2588 Ext.: 72929 (8 AM-5 PM)
Email Address: rmacedo@rcn.com
http://users.rcn.com/rmacedo
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ARES Online Database and Registration Form Link

Hello to all….

For Amateurs who want to sign up for ARES and access the ARES Online Database and Registration Form to join ARES, click the Join Us link on the main menu of the ARES web page. For those that are already ARES members, in the next 1-3 days, we will be sending you’re login information including user ID and password if you have not already received it.

Please let me know if you have any questions concerning the Eastern Massachusetts ARES Online Database and Registration Form.

73,Rob-KD1CY.
Eastern Massachusetts ARES Section Emergency Coordinator
ARES SKYWARN Coordinator for NWS Taunton 1

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New ARES Online Registration Form and Database

Hello to all….

The following is an announcement on the new ARES Online Registration Form and Database. This writeup was put together by Mike Neilsen-W1MPN, Eastern Massachusetts ARRL Section Manager, Phil McNamara-N1XTB, ARES EC MARS Liaison, Carl Aveni-N1FY, ARRL Assistant Section Manager-Chief of Staff and South Shore ARES DEC and Rob Macedo-KD1CY, Eastern Massachusetts ARES Section Emergency Coordinator. This announcement was posted as a special message to the ARRL email list.

Eastern Massachusetts ARES is pleased to announce a new method for radio amateurs to register with the section’s ARES program. Through the tremendous efforts of a team headed by Phil McNamara-N1XTB, we now have a new ARES online registration form and database for the Eastern Massachusetts section. Over the years, it has been very difficult to maintain continuity as people signed with the ARES program. With the ubiquity of the Internet, we now have a means that will allow people to register, and then receive rapid acknowledgement that their application has been received. Other powerful features of this database include allowing the user to self- update their information including response status changes, address and contact changes, new equipment or resources, and training from ARES, ARECC classes, SKYWARN Classes, and Incident Command System training etc.

The database will also notify the responsible area DEC and the SEC that a new application has been filed, or the pertinent contact information has changed. Phil, N1XTB, has enabled people in the ARES leadership to be notified of your application (or changes to it), in order to more effectively manage their cadre. The new online ARES database will also send the individual an email acknowledging their session shortly after submitting their registration. The new registrant should then contact his DEC or the SEC for other email lists and information that may be available to him. Also, our local Emergency Coordinator’s will be given access to review ARES applications for their specified coverage area. As the ARES leadership changes, the database can be easily modified to maintain continuity.

The Eastern Massachusetts ARES leadership successfully migrated the previous aging Microsoft Access database and integrated outstanding paper ARES Applications. This effort was spearheaded largely by the tremendous effort of Gil Follett- W1GMF, who updated over 300 people in the database, including call sign, name, address, phone numbers and email address. The Eastern Massachusetts ARES staff is very appreciative of his work. We are now asking that registrants fill in the remainder of the registration information and make any corrections.

We feel that much of this information has changed since originally provided by you. Those Amateurs who do not have Internet access can still obtain the paper ARES registration form from your ARES EC, DEC, or SEC. The Eastern Massachusetts ARES staff encourages Amateurs to learn computer and Internet capabilities as working in today’s emergency communications situations usually require these skills.

In the database inquiry form, you will notice we now ask for your date of birth information and a recent photograph. Since the attacks of September 11th, security has become a paramount issue to the agencies we serve. More questions are being asked prior to participation in federal exercises as well as some activation’s where the federal government is involved, resulting in their requiring our members date of birth data. As this information may be requested with little or no advanced warning, we encourage all participating Amateurs to put this information into the database. You can be sure that the information will only be utilized when it is required by a served agency for ID card preparation. Please be advised that without this information, we may not be able to make you available for operations such as Operation Atlas or TOPOFF-III where the DHS requires this information in order to participate. This information improves our readiness for a major disaster response.

During the testing and data entry phase, some of you may have received a message stating a registration has been submitted for ARES. This was due to having the email mechanism turned on during testing phase. We understand some of you may have deleted this message as spam. After this press release circulates via email lists over the next few days, you will receive an email concerning your registration with login information. At that time, we ask that you login and update your record accordingly. Please take the time to update any training at the link at the top of your record page.

There may be some concern about privacy, hackers and spammers. Phil, N1XTB, keeps the site updated with the latest security patches. The information that you provide is protected by the same robust technology used in credit card transactions and online banking.

We are most fortunate to have received the benefit of Phil’s expertise with online database development work. He deserves a tremendous amount of credit for giving the gift of his time and abilities to the section on this project. Phil has been a huge asset to the section having assisted with the many ARES and SKYWARN activations over the past several years.
Following the blitz of these press releases to as many of the emergency communications lists that we have at our disposal for Eastern Massachusetts, you will receive an email with login information and the initial password we’ve assigned. Please login, change your password, and review/update the information that we have put together for your ARES registration. The EMA privacy policy can be found on our website at http://ema.arrl.org.

If you have questions, comments, or concerns, please email Rob-KD1CY, Eastern Massachusetts ARES SEC at kd1cy@ema.arrl.org and he will get back to you ASAP. Thank you all for your continued support of Eastern Massachusetts ARES! We hope you will see this new online registration form and database as a huge asset to our section!

de W1MPN
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Eastern MA ARRL Leaders Meet With Governor's Staff

Eastern MA ARRL Section Manager Mike Neilsen, W1MPN writes:

I would like to take this opportunity to briefly outline our efforts with the Governor’s Office since the “Town Meeting” incident last November. Section Emergency Coordinator Rob Macedo, KD1CY, Assistant Section Manager Mark Duff, KB1EKN, and I attended a meeting in December with Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency Director McCombs and Response and Recovery Branch Head John Tommaney. Both expressed their full support and appreciation for our efforts in supporting MEMA. As I reported in an earlier message, representatives from both the American Red Cross and the Salvation Army have also personally expressed their support to me on your behalf.

Additionally, Rob and I met with the Governor’s Staff and Director McCombs last week at his office at the State House. It was a very satisfactory meeting with both teams agreeing to a set of outreach activities and timeline. I now consider the matter closed, and I hope you will too.

MEMA continues to be impressed with the ability of RACES and ARES to participate in the SKYWARN program and provide initial damage reports to the NWS and MEMA which are factored into operational disaster plans as required. They stated that during the initial phase of the disaster, damage assessment reports may be delayed until the proper personnel can get in place. Hams would have the ability to communicate immediately until the state’s resources can be brought to bear on the situation.
The points that Director McCombs and John Tommaney made to us at our December meeting were reiterated to the Governor’s staff and it was an opportunity for Rob and me to explain Amateur Radio’s capabilities to the Governor’s staff. It appeared that the Governor’s staff and MEMA officials were very attentive, and offered additional suggestions for an outreach. In particular, MEMA reiterated their appreciation of the fact that hams are naturally dispersed across the region, and believe the hams have a critical role during the initial stages, not just when communication systems go down. 1

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RACES Nets and Eastern Massachusetts ARES Net Delayed Until Monday January 9th

Hello to all….

Just a reminder that the RACES Nets and the Eastern Massachusetts ARES Net will be held next Monday January 9th due to New Year’s falling on a Sunday and the state/federal holiday being celebrated today in most areas.

Happy New Year to all and hope to hear from many of you as we activate for tomorrow’s big storm.

73,Rob-KD1CY.
Eastern Massachusetts ARES Section Emergency Coordinator
ARES SKYWARN Coordinator for NWS Taunton Massachusetts
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Merry Christmas, Happy New Year, and Happy Holidays to All!

Hello to all….

We are entering the very festive time of year of Christmas, New Year and important religious holidays for many over the course of next week. On behalf of the entire Eastern Massachusetts ARES staff, I would like to take this opportunity to wish everyone a Merry Christmas, Happy New Year, and a happy and festive holiday season to those celebrating important holidays that are coinciding with the Christmas season this year.

Eastern Massachusetts ARES continues to broaden its relationship with served agencies including the National Weather Service, the American Red Cross, the Salvation Army and local Emergency Management and ARES groups. We continue to have strong relations with the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency through the efforts of Tom Kinahan-N1CPE, Massachusetts State RACES Radio Officer and Mike Nielsen-W1MPN, Eastern Massachusetts ARRL Section Manager. MEMA continues to work closely with us concerning the governor’s comments made in mid-November and continued progress is being made to recognize the capabilities of Amateur Radio and the executive state level and as more progress is made, we will report that to all of you.

Eastern Massachusetts ARES was very active this year with our Emergency Communications Workshop where we did a basic class in April in Ipswich and an advanced class in August in Attleboro. Cape Cod ARES has developed a Technical Workshop that was run for the first time ever on Cape Cod and is a huge addition to the training offered by our section for emergency
communications. All of this is additive to the ARECC classes that the ARRL offers.

We are working and will implement in January after further testing an ARES Online Application system that will allow us to have a database of all ARES operators in the section. This is thanks to the incredible hard work and effort of Phil McNamara-N1XTB who has worked for several months to create the online form and database. Further details on this exciting development
will follow in January.

We had several small-scale, localized but highly visible ARES activations in the past year. Cape Cod ARES was active with shelter operations for the
Blizzard of 2005 and for the recent nor’easter which brought hurricane force wind gusts and power outages for several days to their region. Eastern Massachusetts ARES supported the Whitman Amateur Radio Club and the Taunton Emergency Management Agency for shelter and EOC operations for the Whittenton Pond Dam crisis. Those operations lasted several days and prompted the ARRL to contact myself and Mike as SEC and SM of the section to determine what preparations were taking place in that area. The operation went very well and exemplified ARES and RACES cooperation along with the use of ARESMAT to support long duration operations for a localized event. SEMARA ARES and Cape Cod ARES both provided critical support to the operation.

We had several successful exercises including the June Hurricane Exercise which involved the National Hurricane Center in Miami, Florida via VoIP, the
Operation Atlas Boston Logan Airport Drill also in June and our Power Outage drill in mid November. These exercises allowed us to put in practice much of what we learn in our workshops as well as public service events. We also reorganized and put into place our monthly Eastern Massachusetts ARES Net on the MMRA system on the RACES Net night, immediately following all the nets. While it can make for a long evening,. participation is strong as we’ve turned the RACES Net Night into an Emergency Communications Net night exemplifying the partnership ARES and RACES must have to be successful.

While we still have more work to do in creating depth in the ARES organization by recruitment and further training, the program remains very well organized and its a testament to the hard work and dedication of all of you as ARES members. On behalf of the Eastern Massachusetts ARES staff, we thank all of you for your support and wish you a Merry Christmas, Happy New
Year, and a happy and festive holiday season to those celebrating holidays that coincide with the Christmas season.

Below is a note of thanks for the holiday for all those who have contributed in the ARES-SKYWARN program in Eastern Massachusetts. This message was sent
out to the SKYWARN email list as well:

We are entering the very festive time of year of Christmas, New Year and important religious holidays for many over the course of next week. On behalf of the National Weather Service in Taunton, Massachusetts, it is time to take this opportunity to wish everyone a Merry Christmas, Happy New Year, and a happy and festive holiday season to those celebrating important holidays that are coinciding with the Christmas season this year.

We’ve seen an extremely high level of weather activity this year. With the powerful nor’easters that were seen from January through May of this year including the Blizzard of 2005, to the severe weather outbreaks that occurred in August and other points this summer, to the October floods to the powerful short lived nor’easter in early December that produced hurricane force winds on Cape Cod and 7-17″ of snow across interior portions of Southern New England, the NWS Taunton SKYWARN program with the associated ARES and SKYWARN teams and non-Amateur Radio SKYWARN Spotters across the NWS Taunton County Warning Area have provided an invaluable service. Many areas lack the surface observations to help produce a forecast that will protect life and property. The National Weather Service in Taunton is blessed with all of you, highly trained SKYWARN Spotters and highly trained Amateur Radio SKYWARN Spotters who react and provide critical ground truth reports to protect life and property. Whether it is a severe thunderstorm in the summer, or a nor’easter in the winter, or spring and fall flooding and everything in between, all of you are there, and for that, the National Weather Service is thankful for your efforts.

We are looking forward to another year of working with all of you. We are planning a more extensive SKYWARN training plan for 2006 than 2005 and we will continue to work to expand the technologies in getting data into NWS through Amateur Radio and other means. We don’t know how active the 2006 year will be but we know that regardless of how active the next year will
be, all of you will be there to support the primary mission of SKYWARN and the National Weather Service to help protect life and property with precise ground truth reports of what is happening when severe weather strikes regardless of season.

I look forward to working with all of you through the remainder of 2005 and into 2006. Once again, I would like to wish each and everyone of you Merry Christmas, Happy New Year and a happy and festive holiday season to those celebrating other important religious holidays this week. Take care and all the best to everyone of you!

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 #: 1-800-445-2588 Ext.: 72929 (8 AM-5 PM)
Email Address: rmacedo@rcn.com
http://users.rcn.com/rmacedo
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ARES Standdown Message/Reminder: Monthly ARES Net Tonight

Hello to all….

****Eastern Massachusetts ARES to Stand Down from Standby Mobilization for
Possible Flooding****
****Reminder of the Monthly ARES Net Tonight at 830 PM****

Luckily, the heaviest rainfall past west of Southern New England, some flooding did occur in parts of the area and there was even strong winds and
wind damage in parts of Southeastern New England but the region was spared major flooding and problems from this latest Spring storm and ARES can standdown effective immediately.

A reminder that the monthly ARES Net for February is rapidly approaching. The monthly ARES Net for April is Monday April 3rd, 2005, at 8:30 PM on the MMRA Repeater system. This is after the RACES Nets earlier in the evening.

Make the first Monday of the month, “Emergency Communications Night” and check into your local RACES Net and then check into the ARES Net on the MMRA
Repeater System. We look forward to your participation and remember, we are always looking for Net Controls to run the ARES Net. Thanks to all for your
continued participation!

We will have several interesting announcements for the net this evening and we look forward to everyone’s participation. Updates will be posted via
email and on the Eastern Massachusetts ARES Web Site at
http://ares.ema.arrl.org

Thanks 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 #: 1-800-445-2588 Ext.: 72929 (8 AM-5 PM)
Email Address: rmacedo@rcn.com
http://users.rcn.com/rmacedo
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Monthly Eastern Massachusetts ARES Net Report for February 2005

Hello to all…

The following is the Eastern Massachusetts ARES Net Report from Monday February 7th, 2005 utilizing the MMRA Repeater System. There were 25
check-ins for the February Net.

N1BDA-Steve-Concord, Mass. (NCS)
KB1EKN-Mark-Hingham, Mass.
KD1CY-Rob-New Bedford, Mass. @ W1AEC
N1FY-Carl-Brockton, Mass.
N1FLO-John-Attleboro, Mass.
K1EJ-Darrel-Chelmsford, Mass. (Marlboro Repeater, Battery Power).
N1DM-Dom-Natick, Mass. (146.82 Repeater, RACES Radio Officer for Natick)
KB1BXQ-Bob-Wellseley, Mass.
WC1PLV-Jim-Plainville, Mass.
N1XTB-Phil-Middleboro, Mass. (Air Force MARS/RACES Radio Officer)
KD1XX-Pat-North Attleboro, Mass. (Army MARS Liaison)
N1HY-Richard-Bedford, Mass. (Bedford RACES Radio Officer, Fixed, Quincy
Repeater)
W1ZSA-Roger-Walpole, Mass.
WA1OEZ-Bob-Taunton, Mass. (Region II RACES Radio Officer)
W1PLW-Ron-Marlboro, Mass.
W1EAV-Chris-Marion, Mass. (Echolink)
AA1VS-Charles-Lowell, Mass.
K1YCQ-Byron-Somerset, Mass.
NG1L-Rick-Everett, Mass.
KA1RDZ-Dan-Everett, Mass.
KB1LOY-James-Ashland, Mass.
W1RBF-Dick-Sandwich, Mass.
N1UMJ-John-Taunton, Mass.
N1CRC-Rich-Concord, Mass.
W1BRI-Bryan-Milford, Mass.

Comments from the ARES Net

KD1CY-Rob @ W1AEC:
Cape Cod ARES will be holding an exercise on Saturday February 12th, 2005 from 10 AM-Noon. It will be an outdoor mobilization in the cold and snow. This drill was cancelled from the original date of January 29th due to recovery from the blizzard.

There will be a section wide exercise for Eastern Massachusetts ARES on Saturday March 12th, 2005 from 10 AM-1 PM. Further details will be posted on the web site and for next month’s ARES Net.

There will be an Emergency Communications Workshop Saturday April 2nd, 2005 from 9 AM-4 PM at the Ipswich High School. Further details will be posted on the web site and for next month’s ARES Net.

Carl-N1FY:
Carl announced their Weekly SKYWARN/Emergency Preparedness Net on the 147.180-Bridgewater Repeater, PL: 67.0 Hz meets every Saturday at 8 PM.

Mark-KB1EKN:
Announced that the Boston Marathon is looking for volunteers and that support is still needed. He mentioned the Boston Marathon web site for sign-up at http://www.bmarc.info/

Mark also mentioned the MEMA training web site for those interested in taking MEMA training classes as the training calendar is no longer being published in paper form. Go to http://www.mass.gov/mema for more
information.
Technical Issues

We had problems where the 146.610-Marlboro Repeater could hear the link but
people checking in on that repeater were not heard through the rest of the
MMRA system. From W1AEC’s location, a barely audible station was heard
underneath the Marlboro Repeater putting out tones. It is unclear what
caused the issue and Bryan-W1BRI was going to look into the issue with the
system. This underscores the importance of running the monthly net as its
good practice for net control and it helps to work out any issues
technically by more frequent use of the system.

Preamble Changes

Preamble changes will be made to ask for the call-sign only on the first
round and then get everyone’s name, location, title, comments/announcements
in the second round of the net. It is expected that these preamble changes
will make the net flow better for next month’s net in March.

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 #: 1-800-445-2588 Ext.: 72929 (8 AM-5 PM)
Email Address: rmacedo@rcn.com
http://users.rcn.com/rmacedo
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