Friday, January 26, 2007

The Three P's Of Public Service

Here is a quick reminder of what we consider the basic 3 P's of Public Service, which are always valid, but even more important in these times:

Ensuring your family is protected. You cannot help others as an Amateur Radio Operator if you have not planned for this. This requires:
Having a written Family Disaster Plan.
Maintaining a Family Disaster Supplies Kit with a minimum of three days food. This is not I probably have enough stuff in my cupboard, but food dated and stored for immediate evacuation if needed. At the very least, having such a kit prevents you from having to fight shopping lines when others panic or a snowstorm approaches, and thus makes you available for public service..
Keeping a minimum of a half a tank of fuel in all vehicles.
Knowing your county EMCOMM plans, including your county alert frequency and self-alerting assignments.
Having appropriate equipment, antenna kits and interchangeable emergency power sources.
Keeping batteries charged and generators tested.
Keeping your HT in your briefcase, purse, etc. with you during heightened alerts.

Knowing how government and agencies respond to disasters.
Knowing how amateur radio supplements them.
Knowing what to do and what not to do.
Maintaining skill in tactical and formal message handling.
Completing certification through the Emergency Communications courses.

Attitude - Helping, not hindering
Reliability - Being there when called
Flexibility - Doing what is needed to get the job done.
Thinking - Think before speaking especially concerning government/military operations or using your radio as a soapbox for political opinions.
Appearance - Representing Amateur Radio in a favorable light.

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