Amateur Radio and Emergency Communications

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russellhltn
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Amateur Radio and Emergency Communications

Postby russellhltn » Wed Feb 21, 2007 3:07 am

OK, this isn't exactly sexy "high tech" but it's still technology. Yet this seem to be the first post to even contain the words "Amateur Radio".

So what's the scoop? Is there any official plan? I've heard of it being used in some individual Stake plans. I've heard word of it in time past for broader plans, but have lost contact. If the Church is still doing something with this, this site seems like an ideal way to distribute information and recruit volunteers.

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WelchTC
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Postby WelchTC » Wed Feb 21, 2007 5:46 am

RussellHltn wrote:OK, this isn't exactly sexy "high tech" but it's still technology. Yet this seem to be the first post to even contain the words "Amateur Radio".

So what's the scoop? Is there any official plan? I've heard of it being used in some individual Stake plans. I've heard word of it in time past for broader plans, but have lost contact. If the Church is still doing something with this, this site seems like an ideal way to distribute information and recruit volunteers.

In our stake, we combined with the city to sponsor some amateur radio classes. I've been told by a friend who is an active amateur radio operator that the Church does have and encourage a network of operators for emergency purposes. He used to go to a local store house once a month for radio checks, etc.

Tom

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Postby thedqs » Wed Feb 21, 2007 8:29 am

In my current stake, each building has been outfitted with a VHF/UHF/HF radio shack for emergency communication. Each ward has a couple operators (I am one of them) that take care of certian parts of the neighborhood and in reporting to the stake. The stake can then send to church leaders through radio if phone access is not possible. (I am told (meaning this is not fact and should not be passed around as such) that SLC has an emergency communications that uses Amateur Radio to communicate when other forms don't work.)

In the previous stake I lived in each family had those low power walkie talkies and they would report to their assigned amateur operator contant who would then check in with the stake emergency communications net control. They did a few simulations throughout the year and it worked. The only problem was the walkie talkies sometimes wouldn't get through (but that is because they cannot use high power except in a true emergency)

So here are two methods of two stakes that have implemented Amateur Radio.
- David

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Postby russellhltn » Thu Feb 22, 2007 11:15 am

tomw wrote:I've been told by a friend who is an active amateur radio operator that the Church does have and encourage a network of operators for emergency purposes. He used to go to a local store house once a month for radio checks, etc.


Operative word being "used to"? I never got a sense that it was highly organized, but lately I've gotten a sense that there is nothing more then just local effort. If the church at a area/national level wants to do something with this, this forum sure seems like a good place to be doing it. Any chance on getting them on board? Or for that matter local efforts that want to share ideas.

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Postby russellhltn » Thu Feb 22, 2007 11:23 am

thedqs wrote:The only problem was the walkie talkies sometimes wouldn't get through (but that is because they cannot use high power except in a true emergency)


I'm guessing they were FRS/GMRS units. When I looked at it, I think the letter of the law was that a someone who wasn't licensed for GMRS couldn't legally use a GMRS-capable radio. Simply self-restricting to the FRS modes only wasn't technically kosher. That said, I'd agree that enforcement is non-existent. It ranks right up there with using WinZIp past the 30 day trial or using the "free for personal use" Ad-Aware at work or in a FHC. :rolleyes:

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Postby thedqs » Fri Feb 23, 2007 12:43 pm

RussellHltn wrote:I'm guessing they were FRS/GMRS units. When I looked at it, I think the letter of the law was that a someone who wasn't licensed for GMRS couldn't legally use a GMRS-capable radio.


Yes they were FRS/GMRS units. Though for the exercise they used the FRS bands (and a half of a watt). And the law is that GMRS is restricted to those that have a GMRS license except in cases of emergency as determined by the FCC.

RussellHltn wrote:Operative word being "used to"? I never got a sense that it was highly organized, but lately I've gotten a sense that there is nothing more then just local effort. If the church at a area/national level wants to do something with this, this forum sure seems like a good place to be doing it. Any chance on getting them on board? Or for that matter local efforts that want to share ideas.


Most of the emergency preparedness exercises using amateur radio are done with the local law enforcement so I just think that it got moved over to that, since the operators would be mostly invloved with that side during an emergency.
- David

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Amateur Radio and Emergency Communications

Postby Zlhii-p40 » Fri Feb 23, 2007 10:55 pm

The fact is that SLC does have emergency broadcasting equipment
some of the antenna's are located on top of the Church Office Building. The Church also has a department just for emergency's.




thedqs wrote:In my current stake, each building has been outfitted with a VHF/UHF/HF radio shack for emergency communication. Each ward has a couple operators (I am one of them) that take care of certian parts of the neighborhood and in reporting to the stake. The stake can then send to church leaders through radio if phone access is not possible. (I am told (meaning this is not fact and should not be passed around as such) that SLC has an emergency communications that uses Amateur Radio to communicate when other forms don't work.)

In the previous stake I lived in each family had those low power walkie talkies and they would report to their assigned amateur operator contant who would then check in with the stake emergency communications net control. They did a few simulations throughout the year and it worked. The only problem was the walkie talkies sometimes wouldn't get through (but that is because they cannot use high power except in a true emergency)

So here are two methods of two stakes that have implemented Amateur Radio.

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thedqs
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Postby thedqs » Sat Feb 24, 2007 11:16 am

Well now we know that it is fact. Thanks for the info.
- David

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Postby Zlhii-p40 » Sat Feb 24, 2007 12:51 pm

happy to help.

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Postby russellhltn » Sat Feb 24, 2007 2:35 pm

I figured there was still something there, but I guess it's a "closed" group that isn't looking for help from techie members. Otherwise I think they'd be interested in this forum in getting the message out.

But that's quite the opposite of most of other Emergency Communication groups I know of. Most are chronically short-staffed in the number of people available to them. Add to the fact that in any given emergency someone might not be available. Those kinds of things never check people schedules.


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