These are troubling times; People are out of work, there are earthquakes happening all around the world, strange weather patterns. As a result, it seems like every day a new country is breaking out in riots. A people’s ability to rise above the animals and organize as a civilization requires effective communications. Sure, ours is a society with many modern conveniences; Cell phones and the Internet are in the palms of our hands. But what happens when the networks of communication that those people have come to rely on get overloaded or destroyed? When the world is in turmoil, only Amateur Radio provides light, provides support and hope. The licenced operators of these radios, called “Hams,” are constantly training for these moments.
This service was formed in recognition of, and to enhance “the value of the amateur service to the public as a voluntary noncommercial communication service, particularly with respect to providing emergency communications” (47 CFR 97.1a). This is achieved by the constant training and practice of organizations like the Amateur Radio Emergency Services (ARES). ARES trains regularly, by having regular meetings on the air, called Nets, where Hams will follow a specific process to check in, exchange traffic in an organized manner, and then close the net. During these normally scheduled nets, they may only exchange the weather or make an announcement about goings-on in the community. However don’t be fooled, it will be the Ham’s practice and comfort with how an emergency should be handled that will allow them to work quickly and efficiently in the case of a disaster. ARES will also have regular classroom based or scenario based trainings, preparing them for various specific disasters....
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... for granted on a daily basis, and emergencies would render our society helpless without a means to summon or provide help. It can therefore be concluded that Hams, practicing and experimenting on a near daily basis, the world would be far less functional in cases of major catastrophe. Therefore, one must ask themselves: What will YOU do when all other communication fails?
“Basis and purpose.” Code of Federal Regulations Title 47, Pt. 97.1, 2011 ed.
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