Sunday, March 21, 2010

ARES St. Patrick's Day Support

On Wed, Mar 17th our local ARES program activated to support a couple of our served agencies during the St. Patrick's Day parade and festivities.  St. Patrick's Day in Savannah is a big event and significant enough for both the Chatham EMA and Memorial Medical Center to activate thier respective Emergency Operations Centers.  At 0600 Steve-K4SDJ arrived at the CEMA EOC to bring up the amateur radio station and ensure the EOC staff that we have backup communcations established in the event it is needed.  Steve began to take checkins from local ARES members to establish a network of available operators around the city. 

Guy-K4GTM arrived at Memorial Medical Center at 0830 and and reported to Jimmy Gordon who is the Safety Officer for the hospital and to Ra Meguier-N4RVM who was the executive in charge of the hospital EOC activation.  Guy brought up the amateur radio station and established communication with Steve at the CEMA EOC. 
Throughout the day, we transferred the Net Control duties back and forth between the CEMA station N4CEM and the Memorial station K4MUM based on the situation.  We used the Red Cross repeater, 146.850, as our primary repeater for the based on it's proximately to the downtown area.  It worked great.  We maintained a "resource net" of sorts on the primary Chatham County ARES repeater where folks that wanted to be part of the "Parade Net" could be redirected to the Red Cross repeater.  Once again this year we had a number of radio operators in and along the parade route which provided us with great coverage for the event.

Throughout the course of the day we had operators arrive to support the activities at the CEMA EOC and the Memorial EOC.  John-N2DRL worked with Steve at CEMA and Lester-KF4JBQ and Ted-KJ4EGZ worked with Guy at Memorial.  We also had Carl-KC4UHM, who is an employee of Memorial, spend some time with us.

We maintained the net and the active EOC until about 1500 when both CEMA and Memorial de-activated thier respective EOCs and we stood down our ARES activation.  We closed the net and secured our respective amateur radio stations.  These activations give us great opportunities to train and show's our close relationship with our served agencies and the public that we are ultimately in place to support. 

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