OpenBCM V1.08 (Linux)

Packet Radio Mailbox



 Login: GUEST

I0OJJ  > INFO     18.11.21 10:10l 529 Lines 26547 Bytes #999 (0) @ WW
BID : 8397-I0OJJ
Subj: The ARES Letter for November 17, 2021
Sent: 211118/0854Z 8397@I0OJJ.ITA.EU [Rome] $:8397-I0OJJ

            The ARES Letter

Published by the American Radio Relay League

November 17, 2021

Editor: Rick Palm, K1CE <>


- ShakeOut 2021 - A Win with Winlink DYFI Reports to USGS
- Hams Assist in Rescue of Firemen Buried In a Brazilian Cave
- Minnesota ARES, VOAD Partner for 2021 Fall SET
- It's All about Working Together: Operators Provide Comms for PGA Tour
Cycle Event
- Emergency Communications Academy: Plan Now to Attend the 2022 ARRL
National Convention at Orlando HamCation and Emergency Communications
Training Track on Thursday!
- Spotlight: Hawaii ARRL SET, ShakeOut Exercises
- Same Time, Next Year: Providing Support for the Tour de Lincoln
Bicycle Event
- ARES Resources
- ARRL Resources

ARES® Briefs, Links

A major nor'easter struck eastern Massachusetts and Rhode Island last
month with ferocious winds stronger than those that Tropical Storm
Henri brought to the region in August. Starting on the evening of
October 26, eastern Massachusetts amateur radio operators on the ARES
and SKYWARNâ(tm)˘ storm spotter teams joined forces to help emergency
services provide a focused and effective response as the powerful
nor'easter caused widespread damage. Tree and wire damage, trees
falling on homes and cars, and a few cases of direct structural damage
to weakened structures were reported. "We have handled several hundred
reports of damage, and photos of damage are streaming in from ARES and
SKYWARN operators to support damage assessment efforts and to keep the
NWS in Norton apprised of the severe weather conditions affecting the
region," said Rob Macedo, KD1CY, Eastern Massachusetts ARES Section
Emergency Coordinator and ARES-SKYWARN Coordinator for NWS
Boston/Norton. Read the full story here
- Thanks, Rick Lindquist, WW1ME, ARRL news desk, ARRL Letter

View the 2021 Virtual National Hurricane Conference Amateur Radio
Workshop <> of presentations
and discussions conducted by leading SKYWARN, ARES, National Hurricane
Center amateur station WX4NHC, VoIP Hurricane Net operators and other

Fremont, Nebraska agencies conducted training exercises with the
Nebraska National Guard and amateur radio organizations recently. The
National Guard's 72nd Civil Support Team worked with first responders
on a series of hazardous materials (HAZMAT) incident scenarios at the
Fremont Splash Station and Fremont Family YMCA. The exercises' radio
communications services were provided by the Pioneer Amateur Radio
Club's ARES, part of Dodge County Emergency Management. Steve Narans,
WB0VNF, Dodge County Emergency Coordinator, said the organization has
an incident command post that communicated with the emergency operation
center in the Dodge County Courthouse. "It's fully powered with a
generator, computers and communications and recording assets for
filling out forms," he said. "It's basically used for briefings for the
hazmat groups, fire and police departments." A Fremont Tribune article
covered the story.


The United States Geological Survey <> (USGS)
received 774 Winlink Did You Feel It
<> (DYFI) reports with
information and coordinates for plotting on a map. Significantly, 73%
of the reports were sent via RF, with the remaining 27% sent via
internet or mesh networks. USGS was impressed with the responses from
all over the US, Puerto Rico, Canada, Mexico and Australia

Special thanks were conveyed to all ARES and other emergency
communications groups that made Winlink DYFI
<> part of their exercises for
ShakeOut 2021 <>, which was held on October
21. For example, the EmComm Training Organization (ETO) made Winlink
DYFI part of its Winlink Thursday exercises -- 348 Winlink DYFI reports
were submitted by participants. ETO plotted the response by its
participants on a DYFI map

In another example, southern California (SoCal ARES) groups, ARES LAX,
San Diego ARES, Ventura ARES/ACS, Eastern Kern County ARES and CREBC
(Tijuana) organized activation/deployment exercises that combined
passing local agency traffic with sending Winlink DYFI and other
out-of-area traffic. Moreover, these groups tested their direct
collaboration in disasters and coordination on a state level with Jim
Price, KO6GM, in Sacramento (the state capital) acting as a central
out-of-area contact for all groups. Many other groups from all over
North America and the Pacific organized meaningful exercises around

Lessons Learned

For DYFI reports, the USGS reminded participants that street address
means house number, street name, city and state (and zip code, if
possible). Approximately 30 entries could not be plotted because they
were missing city and state entries. Changes to the Winlink DYFI
platform have since been made for clarification.

Decimal degree longitude in North America is a negative number. For
example, the White House is located at 38.8977, -77.0365. A few
stations sent positive longitudes, which located them in Tibet. For
stations that provided US street addresses in addition to the incorrect
longitudes, the USGS used the street address. The USGS encourages all
groups to regularly conduct Winlink DYFI exercises to train with, test,
and have fun with DYFI.

In the SoCal ARES ShakeOut exercise, digital HF circuits became quickly
saturated as several large groups responded to the same event. The HF
traffic jam eventually dissolved, but messages took longer to transfer
than necessary. Improving coordination and
local-gateway-to-out-of-area-gateway techniques may provide higher
throughput in the future.

Training with local and regional partners proved to be extremely
valuable. Moving traffic on local, regional, state and national levels
requires training, practice and coordination, if it is to succeed.
Going forward, local exercises and ShakeOut 2022, the upcoming Haywired
and Cascadia Rising
exercises will provide additional opportunities for large scale traffic
handling by amateur radio groups, which will include Winlink DYFI. --
Oliver Dully, K6OLI, District Emergency Coordinator, ARES LAX Northeast


On Sunday, October 31, 2021, the SĂŁo Paulo, Brazil, State Amateur Radio
Emergency Network (REER-SP) provided support in the response to the
disaster that occurred in Altinopolis/SP. Twenty-eight civil
firefighters were carrying out an exercise in the Duas Bocas Cave when
part of the cave collapsed, leaving nine dead among the buried victims.
Search and rescue operations were carried out by the SĂŁo Paulo Fire
Department, with support from the State Civil Defense.

The radio amateurs played an important role in providing communication
between the Command Post positioned a half a mile from the cave, and
the rescue area, which was difficult to physically access. The hams'
service was effective, providing infrastructure and radio equipment to
facilitate communication between the Operation Command and the rescue
teams, who were out of contact due to lack of telephone or internet
signal. The support by the hams made operations more agile, enabling
the command to receive and transmit messages directly to the rescue
team. The group expressed sorrow for the victims and condolences to
their families. - Thanks, ARRL Letter, Ken Bailey, K1FUG, ARRL HQ; and
Hilton Libanori, PY2BBQ


On Saturday October 23, 2021, Minnesota VOAD (MNVOAD, Voluntary
Organizations Active in Disaster) and Minnesota ARES teamed up for the
ARRL Simulated Emergency Test (SET). Ten operators participated from
three locations near Minneapolis -- Long Lake Regional Park, the
Salvation Army Roseville headquarters, and the MNVOAD President's home.
The objective was to send messages from a simulated disaster that
disabled all communications, leaving amateur radio as the only option.

The scenario: Following a severe weather event, a rural mobile home
park is damaged. 200 residents and 30 animals require shelter and
feeding. Communications and power infrastructure are damaged.
Multi-agency coordination is required. A Long Lake County Sheriff was
dispatched to notify local hams to report to the county emergency
manager for assignment.

The Players: Dennis Walter, N0VZB, ARRL State Government Liaison,
played the Long Lake County Emergency Manager, with ARES Assistant SEC
for Liaison (SEC-L) and MNVOAD President Ryc Lyden, KD0ZWM, playing the
State Duty Officer. Benton Jackson, K0BHJ, Section Emergency
Coordinator, played the COML, AUXCOMM and exercise observer. Erik
Westgard, NY9D, played the Incident Commander.

Salvation Army's Major Michele Heaver, K8EDS, Salvation Army Liaison,
and Matt Stepaniak, N0TNL, represented the entity. Red Cross liaison
was Steve Hartman, WD0BOI. A simulated Incident Command Post (ICP) was
set up at the park, with a tower trailer and 12 V battery power. On the
tower were two dual-band antennas, and an HF 40-meter inverted V used
for VARA-protocol Winlink.

Message Traffic

The first message transferred was a letter to the Governor requesting
state disaster assistance, sent via Winlink VARA HF as a Word document
attachment. The next two messages were requests for a 200-bed shelter
from the Red Cross, and 200 meals from the Salvation Army, formatted in
the ARRL Radiogram version of the ICS-213

    message form. These messages were sent by voice. Another message
was sent via packet. The Red Cross liaison contacted the ARES operation
on a repeater with an update on when the shelter was expected to be
ready. The Salvation Army was able to contact ARES with an ETA of the

The Red Cross initiated the next formal message: they had found that
among the 200 evacuees were 30 dogs, 20 cats, reptiles, and two llamas,
so the message was a formal request for animal support functions for
these pets. The last message passed was from the Emergency Manager to
all partners that cell phone service would be restored by 1400 local
time, which would end the exercise. This was passed on the local
repeater, and on 146.700 MHz.


The mobile 30' tower trailers were quite useful. One was solar powered
with a VHF/UHF antenna. The other was battery-powered and loaded with
two dual band antennas, a wireless access point, and the 40-meter

The relationship between the local emergency manager and amateur radio
operators was a key to success. Contacting a ham outside the affected
area on a repeater also outside of the area was also a key.

Having a pre-arranged contact at MNVOAD allowed a route for messages to
get to VOAD agencies that could provide support. All messages planned
for the exercise were sent, including confirmations of messages

Improvement Plan, Courses of Action

It was discovered at the last minute that the parks administration does
not allow training exercises on county parks without a permit. The
problem was quickly corrected, but the group will need to plan farther
in advance for the next exercise.

Winlink messages need to be sent to multiple call signs, with email
addresses as backup. All email addresses need to be
confirmed/documented ahead of time; the ARES group had no email address
for the State Duty Officer. In a no-comms emergency, a
Winlink-generated email would be a way to communicate that help was
needed. Winlink HF gateways have a user time limit, thus message
handling must be performed efficiently.

The group didn't have enough antennas and coax, or an antenna tuner for
the 40-meter dipole. An operator needs to be assigned to cover every
communications mode at the ICP as some messages were missed.

At times, all operators were head-down trying to solve technical
problems. This was not good: at minimum, one operator needs to be
available to take messages from the nets and communicate with the
emergency manager to ensure messages get passed efficiently.


Minnesota Section Emergency Coordinator Benton Jackson, K0BHJ, said
"overall, this was a successful exercise," adding "a lot went well, and
we learned a lot about our capabilities. This operation was predicated
on a prior relationship between the Long Lake County Emergency
Coordinator and an amateur radio operator. Without this relationship,
the amateur operators do not get to help. We need to find ways to
foster these relationships wherever possible."

The major takeaway from this exercise was the new relationship forged
with MNVOAD. "Our plan going forward is that any exercise or emergency
that calls out a MNVOAD agency will bring amateur radio with it,"
Jackson said.

Postscript: From the Minnesota VOAD President

"I'm currently the Assistant SEC and Liaison for Minnesota ARES and as
such, represent ARES to MNVOAD, the Minnesota Voluntary Organizations
Active in Disaster. Two years ago I became the President of MNVOAD. As
a strong supporter of amateur radio I created a protocol for governing
our communications support.

"MNVOAD has found a real use for our communications teams. They conduct
safety checks, requests and documentation. We use the following format,
dubbed 'CAN-P':

Conditions - What we observe

Actions - What has and is being accomplished

Needs - What resources are needed

PAR - Personnel Accountability Reports

"These 'CAN-P' reports are concise and easy to transmit. When MNVOAD is
activated, I call out our Regional Liaisons and communications teams.
Our comms teams set up at work sites, send in their CAN-P reports to a
net control who shares them with VOAD organization leads, local
emergency managers, State emergency management and MNVOAD leadership.
These reports tell us how many volunteers are active and how many hours
are accumulated, all vital information.

"Communications teams can be requested to be the sole resource for the
city or county, augment their local assets or simply be a MNVOAD team:
there will be communications deployed in all disaster responses in

"It is also of note that most VOAD agencies are not familiar with ICS
forms for official documentation. By having our communications teams
pick up this task, we are providing a service to our communities that
would otherwise be missed.

"It is our hope that emergency managers will see what we are able to do
and the value that they receive." -- Ryc Lyden, KD0ZWM, MNARES
Assistant Section Emergency Coordinator - Liaison, Bloomington AuxComm
Director, President MNVOAD


Last month, 24 amateur radio operators from seven northern Florida
counties supported the PGA Tour Cycle to the Shore
event, October 23-24. This annual event starts at the North Florida
Regional Airport in St. Augustine and ends at the Hilton Hotel in
Daytona on the first day. Then, on the next day the riders return to
the airport in St. Augustine. It is a 150-mile ride and, this year,
there were a thousand riders. As I have written in past articles, the
job of a PIO is to build relationships. These relationships are not
just with our served agencies, the media, and the public; they are also
with other amateur radio organizations and clubs. Without these
relationships, it is difficult, if not impossible, for us as amateurs
to work together when disaster strikes. When served agencies or
organizations request your support for an event in your county, try to
enlist the help of other, nearby counties' amateurs to help. Building
these interop relationships prove to be beneficial when serious
assistance is needed. My thanks to those 24 operators who helped in the
PGA Tour Cycle to the Shore! -- Scott Roberts, KK4ECR, ARRL Northern
Florida Section Assistant Section Manager and Public Information
Coordinator, ARRL QST NFL newsletter, October 2021 issue


Plan on attending the 2022 ARRL National Convention, set to take place
at Orlando HamCation® <> on February 11-13. A
day-long workshop on emergency communications is scheduled as one of
the training tracks that will be offered as part of the National
Convention program that will precede HamCation on Thursday, February
10. The training presentations will feature current protocols,
techniques, and responsibilities for the modern volunteer radio
operator serving partner agency and organizations. The presenters are
all subject-matter experts. Topics to be covered include the ARES,
AUXCOMM and Florida Emergency Communicator Position Task Books, an
overview of amateur radio responses to disasters, basic voice traffic
handling with hands-on voice traffic net/message transfer practice,
using the ICS-213 form, Winlink's ARDOP (Amateur Radio Digital Open
Protocol) and VARA protocols, and the Radio Mail Server (RMS) hybrid
internet/HF radio gateway system. The event will be held on Thursday,
February 10, 2022 at the Doubletree by Hilton Orlando at SeaWorld.
Participants should arrive at the hotel, check in at 8 AM, and be in
seats by 8:30 AM. A National Convention Luncheon (for everyone) runs
from noon to 1 PM in the banquet room. The track ends at 5 PM.
Registration for the ARRL National Convention at Orlando HamCation is
now open. <>


For this year's ARRL SET, held on October 2, Hawaii radio operators
provided damage reports to simulated county emergency management/Civil
Defense agencies in response to a simulated 9.2 magnitude earthquake in
the Aleutians that resulted in a Great Aleutian tsunami, causing damage
to all counties in the State of Hawaii. The purpose of this
communication exercise was to verify operator ability to use digital
protocols as well as voice to pass messages. Operators worked from home
or safe location. (If the operator lived in an extreme tsunami
evacuation zone, the amateur was asked to simulate evacuation to a safe
area or a designated county tsunami refuge area. Operators were
requested to use auxiliary power -- batteries, solar panels, and

Objectives: participants were to transmit three Winlink messages using
the Winlink templates/forms -- Check-In, ICS-213, Check-Out. Winlink
modes used: Telnet, VARA FM, VARA HF, VARA HF Peer to Peer (P2P),
PACTOR, Packet and AREDN Mesh. "Hub and Spoke" concepts were used to
forward messages. Voice messages were also involved.

What went well: Most radio operators were successful in sending all
three Winlink messages. Hawaii used two county reports that the county
EOC would actually receive in a real event -- the Situation Report
(SITREP) and Request for Assistance (RFA). The Hawaii forms were
modified with numbers, which made it easier to pass messages by voice.
The gateways worked well. Exercise instructions were helpful. AREDN
Mesh was used by one station. Relays were successfully set up as Hub
and Spokes. Oahu VARA FM digipeating worked. On Oahu, the simulated EOC
had 14 voice check-ins, and 10 voice damage reports were received. Many
stations operated on auxiliary power.

Challenges: Exercise was limited to Winlink and voice relays. Some
gateways were busy. Voice messages were transmitted too fast. Only two
HF P2P messages were received.

What could be improved: In the future, operators should not use the
word "repeat"; they should use "say again" in voice messaging. More
practice is needed for sending voice messages. We need to encourage
more participants for future exercises and incidents, and more Winlink

All of Hawaii's four counties were represented with a total of 58 radio
operators participating and 157 messages sent. In summary, the 2021 SET
was successful with the three Winlink and the two Big Island County
forms sent successfully.

Hawaii Great ShakeOut 2021

The Hawaii Great ShakeOut was held Saturday, October 16, 2021, the
second time Hawaii has participated in this annual event. The exercise
was based on a real magnitude 6.2 earthquake that occurred at 10:58 AM
on Sunday, October 10, 2021, off the Big Island and felt throughout the
state. The October 16 simulated exercise temblor was located inland in
Volcano National Park. The simulated magnitude 7.2 earthquake resulted
in various simulated damages on the Big Island and felt throughout the
State of Hawaii. It occurred at 8:50 AM HST and Hawaii hams started
reporting to the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) using the Winlink DYFI
form beginning at 9 AM.

The objective was for Hawaii amateur radio operators throughout the
state to submit a Winlink DYFI (Did You Feel It) template with
simulated responses per their location from the center of the simulated
earthquake. Digital email modes used were VARA FM, VARA HF, Packet and
Telnet. Operators used the Winlink RF email system to submit reports
directly to the USGS main computer system (USGS has developed an
interface to support amateur radio reports for simulated and real


Twenty-two amateur radio operators from California's Western Placer
Amateur Radio Club (WPARC) provided communications and other support
for the Rotary Club's Tour de Lincoln charity bicycle event on
Saturday, October 30. The Tour de Lincoln
<>consists of three ride courses: 25K, 50K,
and 100K runs through the hills of Lincoln, California. There were at
least 425 riders. This was the 14th year that WPARC volunteers have
supported the event.

"Our goal is to help the cyclists, their support crews, and their
families have a safe and enjoyable event," said Roger Brunnquell, K6OU,
the club coordinator for the event. "Similar to a real emergency event,
we have to be flexible in our planning and execution." In addition to

    communications, the WPARC radio operators are able to help with
basic bike repair, and transport a broken bike and/or a tired rider
back to base. All radio operators get to dust off their event and
emergency communication skills in providing support that is greatly
appreciated by the riders and the Lincoln community.

The operators use the WPARC repeater (K6PAC) as the backbone for most
communications. Two alternate repeaters in the area are available for
tactical and emergency use. "This year, we had 14 SAG (Support And
Gear) units on the course and hams at the three Rest Stops," said
Brunnquell. "All ham radio vehicles on the course and at Rest Stops had
letter-sized S-A-G signs, printed on bright orange cardstock so riders
could flag them for help."

The team deals with real-time situations from the routine coordination
of food and water for the volunteer-runner rest stops, transporting
bikes and tired riders, replacing colored bike route arrows, to
communicating emergencies and initiating first responder support.

"We take our responsibilities very seriously, but have a lot of fun at
the same time -- one of our rules as a club is that we never leave our
assigned positions as long as there is a rider on the course," said
Michael Buck, K6BUK, who leads the Net Control team. "At Net Control,
we log the time and content of every communication, something that was
important several years ago when a rider had an aneurysm and succumbed
on the course."

The Net Control station was located at McBean Park in downtown Lincoln,
the event's base and the riders' starting and ending point. The
experienced team of three net control operators set up a station, ran
the event comms, and interacted with the event director from that
central location-- from coordinating vehicle rollout at the starting
line, to staffing the rest-stop relay stations, checking out first aid
and mechanical kits, and getting things ready for the event.

"The Tour de Lincoln is such a great event for our amateur radio
operators to participate in," adds Don Hayes, N6DPH. Many of the WPARC
radio operators have been helping with the Tour for over 10 years.
"Every year we add a few new radio operators, which helps our
continuity of operations for the subsequent years," Brunnquell
emphasized. "But what makes the amateur radio portion of the event so
successful is those who come back year after year -- they know the
routine, they just need updates, course changes, and additional
training determined from the last year." After the event, the
volunteers evaluate their efforts: what went well, and what
improvements are needed.

After the closing, the Rotary Club event director, Bryan Ludwig,
mentioned to Brunnquell that some riders commented that the ham radio
support was an order of magnitude better than what they had experienced
in other cycle events. It made them feel safe. -- Frank Boardman,
K1FMB, Roseville, California


- Download the ARES Manual [PDF]
to enhance your enjoyment of amateur radio.

Donate <> to the fund of your
choice -- support programs not funded by member dues!

Click here <> to advertise in this newsletter, space
subject to availability.


The ARES Letter is published on the third Wednesday of each month. ARRL
members may subscribe at no cost or unsubscribe by editing their Member
Data Page as described at

 Copyright (c) 2021 American Radio Relay League, Incorporated.
Use and distribution of this publication, or any portion thereof, is
permitted for non-commercial or educational purposes, with attribution.
All other purposes require written permission.


Read previous mail | Read next mail

 29.11.2021 04:04:31lGo back Go up