CQ’s July Editorial rebuffs ARRL’s inartful attempt to downgrade Emergency Auxiliary Communications Volunteers to a basic Public Service category!
What’s in a name? The name we give to what we do greatly influences how people perceive it. From things like car accidents to supporting local government communications in an disaster, we definitely provide an effective means of emergency communications. Arlington County Races was activated in the 2012 Drecho storm that came through. When 911 didn’t work, we were stationed at fire stations providing needed communications between the county government and its residents.
Rich Moseson, W2VU, reacts in his editorial to the ARRL’s efforts to de-emphasize emergency communications as a term and replace it with public service communications. Rich makes some great points in his editorial. We encourage you to check out what he wrote in the July 2014 CQ Magazine.
The National Bureau of Standards tests of Public Safety high band and amateur 2-meter antennas indicate that a “rubber duck” has -5db, “negative gain” compared to a quarter wave held at face level. In terms of effective radiated power (ERP), this means that a 5 watt HT with rubber duck, radiates only 1 watt.
- Operating an HT on your belt results in another -20db attenuation, reducing ERP to 50 milliwatts! That’s 1/20 of one watt!
UHF results are no better…
Due to the design of the factory installed HT antenna, you are effectively missing half of the antenna! Now put the operator on the ground between buildings, cars, trees, and other people and you can see why they can’t hear or hold the repeater
Who doesn’t want to lol when they see this shirt?
Finally winter is gone. The leaves are on all the trees . . . and absorbing RF. It’s time for antenna work, Hamfests, and Field Day. Think about insuring that your VHF and UHF path to our great ARPSC repeater system is solid. Check out the mast height, coax connections, and lightning protection. And take a few minutes each Wednesday at 9:00 pm to check into the RACES net. You don’t have to be in Arlington to check in or even be a certified RACES member, although that should be goal. Our robust repeater system has remote receivers to the North, South, East, and West. Regulars and Visitors are always warmly welcomed. Remember 146.625 (- 600) and 447.625 (- 5 MHz) with a PL of 107.2 for each.
Two of my favorites Hamfests are Manassas on Sunday, June 8th and Berryville on August 3rd. If you go switch your HT to 146.625 Simplex and see who from the club is on the grounds.
Field Day is June 28/29. Each year we do something a little different. Check into the Wednesday net for updates. In any case Field Day is the perfect time to review your equipment and state of preparedness should you need to provide emergency communications.
Keep safe, be prepared, and we’ll see you on the radio.
– Gerry, N3EVT