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I'd like to take an informal survey to find how many Firefighters are also Amateur Radio Operators. My call sign is W8JSA and I'm a General Class Operator. I have found that Ham Radio does two things for me, first is my ability to continue to communicate should the public safety trunked radio system shut and while at home it's nice to "meet" others from around the world without leaving my shack, that's where a ham radio operator has his or hers radios, etc. Below are a couple of URLs regarding Amateur Radio:

http://www.arrl.org
http://www.amsat.org
http://www.tapr.org

My personal website,

http://w8jsa.org/radio.html

73s de Jeff

Be safe, Brothers and Sisters when dancing with the Devil . . . !

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KL0IF de W8JSA QSL!
Brent thanks for the reply. How does your EM and Chief of the Department view Amateur Radio? We in Hampton Roads saw what good Amateur Radio could do when the City of Franklin was flooded when the Blackwater River topped its banks after Hurricane Floyd. I worked a lot packet radio during the Franklin flood. However, I was stationed at Ft Rucker AL when Hurricane Ivan blasted into the panhandle of Florida and just ripped apart Dothan AL and the surrounding communities not to mention have happened to Panama City FL.

There is one county in the panhandle of Florida where every Sheriff's Deputy is also a ham radio operator. As I understand from a deputy, it's now a requirement because the county just doesn't have the funds to upgrade the public safety radio system and the ham radio repeater has never gone down. The repeater is used only for amateur radio use during shifts but is a valuable resource during hurricanes and other emergencies, when all else fails.
I understand that Ford will pre-wire any new vehicle for Amateur Radio use if the owner provides his or her licence during the ordering process. But, just try and find a salesperson that will know what you're talking about is another thing. I know it's fairly easy on a Crown Vic and probably any other vehicle that has a service service package that can be ordered.

Where you at your present FD when TS Alberto hit?

I was thinking about starting a primarily (only) firefighter net on HF. I think that either 80M or 40M should work fine except that 80 seems to go to pot during the summer thunderstorm season. Tell me what you think of the idea.
My department is currently setting up with Ham radios as a means of back up communication. We now have Ham's in all our stations and on each apparatus. Most members of the department are Ham techs with several general certified. We are still in the beginning stages of the program but it seems to be a good thing for us.
Excellent news Aaron. Let me know if you or your FD need any help and I'll do what I can from VA. Are you on 2M or 70CM or both? Do your stations have any HF capability or is that some for the future? Do you have your ticket yet? If so, what's ur call?
A net on HF might be interesting.

K9TLS
Sorry, that was Hurricane Opal that hit Panama City FL and then hit Dothan AL, all of 90 miles inland. Hurrican Ivan hit somewhere around Pensacola and Fort Walton Beach FL.

Jeffrey S Austin said:
KL0IF de W8JSA QSL!
Brent thanks for the reply. How does your EM and Chief of the Department view Amateur Radio? We in Hampton Roads saw what good Amateur Radio could do when the City of Franklin was flooded when the Blackwater River topped its banks after Hurricane Floyd. I worked a lot packet radio during the Franklin flood. However, I was stationed at Ft Rucker AL when Hurricane Ivan blasted into the panhandle of Florida and just ripped apart Dothan AL and the surrounding communities not to mention have happened to Panama City FL.

There is one county in the panhandle of Florida where every Sheriff's Deputy is also a ham radio operator. As I understand from a deputy, it's now a requirement because the county just doesn't have the funds to upgrade the public safety radio system and the ham radio repeater has never gone down. The repeater is used only for amateur radio use during shifts but is a valuable resource during hurricanes and other emergencies, when all else fails.
Our stations have installed 2m/70cm machines & one reserve rig for install in vehicle. We held a 2-night course at the station. There are about 8 licenced operators. Have DCS coded simplex between stations as intercom during storm / EOC ops. Have multple "tactical" simplex freqs all ready to go. Developed process to direct frequency switch by 6-character text message per this standard: http://irarc.ham-radio-op.net/documents/CODE_READ_ME.pdf Multiple radios in the area are programmed per this standard. Used 2m amongst some travellers during convoy of FL-TF4 US&R to MS for Katrina. Had 2m comm with county EOC from BOO at Gautier MS. I got my licence as a result of Hurricane Andrew deployment.

My thing since 2007 is US NATIONAL GRID. Do you all know & use it?? (I know the answer). Send email to USNG08...at...gmail.com (use standard email format) for auto-reply full of details.

Al Studt
Lieutenant
Cape Canaveral Fire Rescue
17R NM 3875 4017
See this demo: http://www.fidnet.com/~jlmoore/usng?usng=17RNM3875640175&disp=h...
KC2GRI - Keith- at Defreestville Fire Department in Rensselaer County NY. While my department is supportive, Amateur Radio isn't a big fire service concern up here. I know several firemen active in Amateur Radio. ARES/RACES does exist and is working to grow. There is a presence in the SAR community, both wilderness & urban, and an awareness in the local, county, and state Emcomm community.
Jeff

de W3TDH. My Fire Chief assigned me to the Emergency Preparedness Committee of our city government as a liaison. One of the issues that they were working on was emergency communications. So I went with the chairman to a technician training class and got my license. I upgraded in each of the following months so I'm now an Extra Class licensee. The county government seems very ambivalent, almost schizophrenic, about emergency communications. We have one of those glorified cell phone systems called digital trunked radio. The whole county was thrown radio dark a few years ago by a shrew chewing through a fiber optic cable. The Department of Information Systems Technology (DIST) treats all inquiries about system details as an attempted security breech. It now costs fifteen thousand dollars to equip a three person crew with portable radios.

The Office of Emergency Services and Homeland Security maintains a Radio Amateur Civil Emergency Service organization that they are about to try to reorganize into the Auxiliary Communications Service. That is being done so that they can use volunteers from other radio services such as the General Mobile Radio Service (GMRS), Family Radio Service (FRS), Multi Use Radio Service (MURS), and Citizens Band in addition to the Amateur Radio Operators. How all that will go only time will tell.

--
Tom Horne
W8JSA de W5EJK, John
W8JSA DE KA8VIV
Yep...I'm one too..Since High School. My original call was WA3SNV When I lived in Bethesda, MD. Breifly Volunteered at Montgomery Co. Rescue 1, before I ended up in west Virginia where I'm currently at. Retired January 2009 from Kanawha Co. Ambulance as a paramedic after 30 years. Still work part time and part time at a local 2 way radio shop. Been active volunteer firefighter with Malden and Rand VFD's since 1973.

Best 73's ...bill

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