Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Sunday Session=Cross Band Repeaters

Sunday Sessions are gearing up. Last Sunday a group met at the EAWA/EMCOMM meeting place, Meadow View Apartments at 25 Tweedie Lane in Ellsworth. The past session included work done on portable cross band repeaters being built locally using commercial radios available after the recent narrow banding wave in public service sector! Using Motorola VHF and UHF radios and interfaces purchased off EBay (Cheap!), programming done by local Sunday Session gurus Mark N1MEA and Bob AA1PI, a power supply they are ending up with tidy portable packages allowing placement in local and remote locations expanding coverage! Neat stuff happening around here folks, if you want to join in the fun show up around 1 PM on Sundays, but first check with Mark N1MEA at to make sure there is a session scheduled!

COML & Hancock County EMCOMM!

September 18th thru the 20th was a three day event that six local Hams, Rob W8HAP, Chris AB1PZ, John KB1PXP, Mark N1MEA, Andy KB1TGL and myself Dick W1KRP found out about a place called “Central City’ a fictional city of 100,000 people. As far as we could tell, Central City was having a major “melt-down’. What is this all about, well we were fortunate enough to participate in a FEMA Communications Unit Leader(COML) three day course held here in Ellsworth. Thanks go out to Andy Sankey, KB1TGL who is the Director of Hancock County Emergency Management Agency (HCEMA) for getting the training held locally. What is a COML; well directly from the book….**Plan and manage technical and operational aspects on communications functions during an incident or event **Prepares Incident Radio Communications Plan (ICS 205) **Establishes Incident Communications Center (ICC) **Orders and manages personnel and equipment **Establishes needed capabilities and participates in incident action planning., prerequisites for this training included ICS 100, ICS 200, ICS 300 and NIMS 700. For Hams the ICS 300 was waivered. The level of training was quite high, some of us may not proceed on to Certification to COML level (it requires completion of a Task Book being signed off which is quite a task in itself!) BUT, the training has better prepared the six of us for actual participation in training sessions and actual incidents at the EMCOMM level, giving us the knowledge and confidence to deal with these matters in a professional manner. We came away with knowing the importance Hams play in the overall plans of actions. Their importance was stressed to all the class members who also included, US Army, CDC, EMA Directors and Regional Communications Center Directors. Again, Thanks Andy for allowing us the opportunity to be part of the puzzle and the plan to solve it!