Amateur Radio operators are most likely to be active after disasters that damage regular lines of communications due to power outages and destruction of telephone, cellular and other infrastructure-dependent systems. They are NOT, as has already been stated, first responders. Photo Gallery Due in part to ne The one red-lighted unit is attached to a local fire department and responds with that department when needed. Radio amateurs who are concerned about how the decommissioning of ECRVs will affect opportunities to serve the American Red Cross can be assured that such opportunities still exist. Localized Disaster : Flooding, tornados, or any substantial weather event, where it might not disrupt major areas of communications, but there is still a need for communications to be set up Search, rescue, and traffic needs during the local disaster.
Emergency Communications Vehicle Magnet
Radio Amateurs to Demonstrate Emergency Messaging Capabilities for Red Cross, FEMA
By that standard, a ham operator during an active emergency response would be a legal emergency vehicle. There are specific cases where Salvation Army units ARE declared emergency vehicles and do operate legally with emergency lighting. At the local level, hams may participate in local emergency organizations, or organize local "traffic nets" using VHF very high frequencies and UHF ultra high frequencies. Most people know ham radio operators aid in storm spotting and reporting back to the National Weather Service.
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Needless to say, they had nothing but disdain for the local PD's that weren't quite as serious about the job. I was taught to get out of the way of red lights, and if that means driving through a fence and into someone's lawn, or pulling up onto a sidewalk, I was told to do it. And NG troops simply don't have the training, or the time to argue the point. Back to Top Having Trouble? Amateur Radio operators have informal and formal groups to coordinate communication during emergencies.