QST QST QST – ATTENTION ALL WPA RADIO AMATEURS

QST QST QST – ATTENTION ALL WPA RADIO AMATEURS AND ARES MEMBERS
FROM: WESTERN PENNSYLVANIA SECTION, ARRL
DATE: 17 JAN 19


THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE HAS ISSUED SEVERAL SEVERE WEATHER WARNINGSFOR ALL 33 COUNTIES OF THE  WESTERN PENNSYLVANIA SECTION.

BETWEEN NOW AND MONDAY, 21 JAN,  SIGNIFICANT SNOWFALL OF ONE TO AS MUCH AS TWO FEET OF SNOW WILL FALL ON ALL COUNTIES IN THE WPA NORTH-1 AND NORTH-2 DISTRICTS.

ALTHOUGH LESS SNOW IS FORECAST FOR SOUTH-1 AND SOUTH-2 DISTRICTS, THEY COULD RECEIVE OVER 1/4 INCH OF ICE.

BEGINNING SATURDAY NIGHT AND CONTINUING INTO MONDAY, TEMPERATURES WILL DROP AND COMBINE WITH HIGH WINDS TO PRODUCE DANGEROUS WIND CHILL CONDITIONS.

—————————————————————————————————

PEMA HAS ISSUED THE FOLLOWING STATEWIDE ACS ACTIVATION NOTICE:

“Due to the predicted winter storm, ACS will be Activating from Saturday
1/19 08:00 Thru Monday 1/21 TBD an HF Net will be established on the HQ
Primary Daytime and Nighttime Frequencies starting on Saturday at 0800.
PEMA ACS will also monitor the PaNBEMS HF Frequencies and PEMA ACS DMR
Talkgroup on the Brandmister network starting at that time.

[PEMA EmComm RACES talkgroup is 31420 – de W3XOX]

Stations are asked to report their current weather conditions.  This
information will be used to provide PEMA with corroborating information
on where the snow, ice, and rain is occurring throughout PA for
situational awareness and operations planning.   See attached 205 for
operation details please be sure to read the notes in Box 5 special
instructions.  If anyone has any questions please feel free to email
Travis Best W3TMB at acso@pa.gov.
—————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————-Click link for frequencies: 

[ http://wpa-arrl.org/Files/Winter_Event_ics_forms_205_LCK.pdf ]
—————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————————

WPA ARES ALERT 17 JAN 19 1823 EST…

ALL WPA ARES MEMBERS ARE ASKED TO MONITOR THE PEMA FREQUENCIES OF 3993.5 AND 7250.5 KHZ LSB VOICE AND/OR 3583.0 AND 7072.5 (USB DATA) FOR DATA TRANSMISSIONS, PER THE ICS-205 FORM. AFTER CHECKING IN, CONTINUE TO MONITOR AND FOLLOW THE DIRECTIONS OF THE NET CONTROL STATION. ONLY TRANSMIT IF YOU HAVE TRAFFIC OR ARE CALLED BY NCS.

WPA ARES HAS NOT BEEN CALLED AS OF THIS WRITING. PLEASE MONITOR YOUR LOCAL AMATEUR RADIO EMERGENCY FREQUENCIES, THE PEMA FREQUENCIES AND IF REQUESTED, THE ARES FREQUENCIES OF 3983 AND 7272 KHZ LSB VOICE, YOUR COUNTY SIMPLEX FREQUENCY AND REPEATERS.

ATTENTION DMR OPERATORS:
PEMA WILL BE USING THE “PEMA EMCOMM” TALKGROUP #31420, AND THE ALTERNATE #31421.

WESTERN PENNSYLVANIA ARES OPERATIONS WILL BE CONDUCTED ON THE “WESTERN PENNSYLVANIA” TALKGROUP #31422 IF NEEDED.

THESE TALKGROUPS ARE ALL REGISTERED WITH THE BRANDMEISTER NETWORK. FOR MORE INFORMATION ABOUT CONNECTING TO THESE GROUPS, PLEASE CONTACT YOUR REPEATER’S TRUSTEE OR OTHER RESPONSIBLE PARTY.

THE TIME TO PREPARE FOR THIS EVENT IS NOW. PLEASE ENSURE YOUR EQUIPMENT IS READY AND PROPERLY CONFIGURED.

73 AND PRESS ON!
JOE SHUPIENIS W3BC
WPA SECTION MANAGER

Major Changes to ARES

Major Changes to ARES and OO Programs

The ARRL Public Service Enhancement Working Group has completed its two-year project to re-tool the Amateur Radio Emergency Service (ARES) to meet the requirements of partner agencies, nationwide. The new program will consist of ARES Members who are “organized, trained, qualified and credentialed” to better serve our partner agencies.

The new program features three levels of ARES membership, which are matched by three levels of required training and certification. The training requirements will be met by members completing free, online courses including NIMS IS-100, IS-200, IS-700 and IS-800 and the newly revised ARRL EC-001, which will be provided free of charge to ARES members. Additional training is required for all ARES leadership appointees (“*ECs”).

The ARRL Board has opened a public comment period which runs until October 31. ARRL requests your comments to be sent through your Section Emergency Coordinator <sec@wpa-arrl.org> and Section Manager <sm@wpa-arrl.org> only. The Board will review all comments and vote on the final program at the January 2019 ARRL Board Meeting.

The current OO program will end, and be replaced by a new Volunteer Monitoring program, administered by ARRL HQ, working closely with FCC. All current OOs will be invited to apply for the new program, which will concentrate on major enforcement issues the FCC requests. The goal is to provide more rapid enforcement response to significant, developing on-the-air violations rather than more minor operating and technical issues.

Much more information about these developments is available online at  www.arrl.org and in upcoming issues of QST.

60 METER TESTS

Every Saturday morning, following the 9:00 WPA ARES Voice Net on 3.983 MHz, we have been meeting on the 60 meter band to make signal strength comparisons across our WPA Section, and to try different antenna configurations to determine what works best to cover or 25,000 square-mile Section.

 

We meet on 60 meters on 5403.5 kHz upper sideband immediately after the 80 meter net. If that channel is in use, we will use 5371.5 USB. Even if your equipment cannot transmit on the 60 meter band, please tune in and listen, then send me a report of the stations you heard, and your signal report for each. This information is very useful, and the more reports we get the more meaningful the information becomes.

Hamshack Hotline

HAMSHACK HOTLINE       https://hamshackhotline.com                                                   This would be a nice addition to our E-Comm station and get other clubs in the area to get involved to have a back up system if the radio system is busy. Faxing and video can be used over the IP phone also.
Karl, WA3VXJ

About Hamshack Hotline

Hamshack Hotline (HH) is a FREE dedicated voip telecom service for the Ham R to radio community. Typically, phones are established in hamshacks, EOCs, Clubs & club members, ARES, and other Ham related areas and functions. It is not the intention of HH to replace traffic carried over radio in an emergency or other tactical operation, but rather to augment it, by offloading managerial tactical operations and providing a full duplex path for such communications when spectrum is occupied, conditions diminished, or otherwise unavailable. HH also supports FAXing of information (with appropriate equipment) which allows tactical offices to share documents & data between tactical locations. In a non-tactical use, HH is an effective resource for off-air troubleshooting when you need to coordinate a troubleshoot of a radio circuit off-air and between multiple SMEs. In addition to all this, conference bridges on the HH network allow large groups of Hams to coordinate & meet in real time anywhere in the world.
Getting on board HH is easy! Just acquire a supported SIP capable phone (our network prefers to register hardware phones first), and open a ticket once you have your phone. If you have one of the phones on our supported hardware list, then also include a picture of the Phone’s MAC address for super easy provisioning.


Steel City Involvement:

Beside members getting a handset Steel City could purchase extra handset for the Allegheny EOC, Salvation Army, American Red Cross, the National Weather Service and we can make them available to local clubs also.   If you look at the map below you can see the country is pretty well covered already except for the Western PA area.   Steel City can lead the way with this build out.  For example last SETI drill Skyview 5 Mhz set up failed and Steel City had to take over net control.  With Hamshack Hotline we could continue having a speakerphone connection with Skyviewv clubhouse  and the person in charge of the drill.  This system would work over an digital mesh network that has been brought up several times. There even examples of being able to tie the phone connection to a club repeater network.
Christine, N3LRG

For more information: https://hamshackhotline.com/


FALL SIMULATED EMERGENCY TEST

W3KWH – Will be participate in this drill. Plan to be at the club house by 9:30 AM. as the technical committee has set up an 60m dipole and confirm the Yaesu FT-991A and Kenwood TS-590 confirm to operate on 60m.  {Both ICOM don’t}


FALL SIMULATED EMERGENCY TEST –
WESTERN PA. SECTION A.R.R.L. 

WHEN: SATURDAY OCTOBER 6,2018
TIME: 0930-1200 HRS  (AFTER THE WEEKLY ARES HF NET)

WHERE: ALL W.PA. A.R.R.L. SECTION COUNTIES

OBJECTIVE: PARTICIPATION IN THE SIMULATED EMERGENCY TEST
(S.E.T.) FOSTERS THE UNDERSTANDING OF INTEROPERABILITY BETWEEN AMATEUR

RADIO AND SERVED AGENCIES…NOT IN THE SENSE OF “WHEN IT ALL HITS THE FAN” BUT IN THE CONFIDENT PERFORMANCE OF CORE CAPABILITIES TO GET THE MESSAGE THROUGH. TO BEGIN THE S.E.T., PARTICIPATING COUNTIES WILL ACTIVATE THEIR SKYWARN NETS ANNOUNCING SIMULATED WEATHER CONDITIONS WHILE CALLING THEIR RESPECTIVE RADIO OPERATORS TO ACTIVE STATUS FOR THE REMAINDER OF THE EXERCISE.

THE S.E.T. WILL BE CONDUCTED IN THREE COMPONENTS:
A- AMERICAN RED CROSS COMPONENT
B- 60M COMMUNICATIONS COMPONENT
C- INDIVIDUAL COUNTY OPERATIONS COMPONENT

COMPONENT A:
THIS COMPONENT INVOLVES AN AMERICAN RED CROSS SHELTER VISIT BETWEEN 1000 AND 1100 HRS. THE COUNTY SHELTER CHOSEN IN THE RED CROSS CHAPTER WILL BE VISITED BY AN ARES FIELD TEAM FOR A VISIT/MEET AND GREET WITH THE SHELTER MANAGER TO EXPLAIN HOW AMATEUR RADIO CAN SERVE THE RED CROSS SHELTER IN TIME OF ACTIVATION. DURING THE VISIT, CALL YOUR COUNTY NET CONTROL WITH LOCATION, TIME AND STATUS OF THE RED CROSS SHELTER…THEN COUNTY NET CONTROL RESPONDS WITH CONFIRMATION OF SHELTER TRAFFIC. AFTERWARDS, EXPLAIN THE MESSAGE HANDLING PROCESS TO THE SHELTER MANAGER. ONCE THE SHELTER VISIT
OBJECTIVES HAVE BEEN MET, FIELD OPERATOR MAY SECURE AND RETURN TO COUNTY

COMPONENT B:
THIS COMPONENT INVOLVES THE ABILITY OF EACH COUNTY NET CONTROL TO OPERATE ON 60M. SKYVIEW RADIO SOCIETY, K3MJW, WILL BE HANDLING THE SECTION 60M TRAFFIC ON CH.4 (5371.5khz) AND CH.5 (5403.5khz) AS BACK UP FREQUENCY SHOULD THE NEED ARISE.  ONCE THE EXERCISE BEGINS AT 0930 HRS, EACH COUNTY NET CONTROL STATION WILL CHECK IN WITH K3MJW TO BE ON THE EXERCISE PARTICIPATION ROSTER.HOURLY, K3MJW WILL CALL EACH PARTICIPATING COUNTY WITH INSTRUCTIONS TO CONTACT ANOTHER COUNTY WITHIN THE W.PA. SECTION AND HAVE THAT COUNTY CALL K3MJW WITH CONFORMATION OF CONTACT. IT IS REQUESTED THAT ALL COUNTIES KEEP A LOG OF STATIONS HEARD ON THE 60M FREQUENCIES. THIS DATA WILL BE COMPILED FOR THE W.PA. SECTION 60M DATABASE.

COMPONENT C:
THIS COMPONENT GIVES PARTICIPATING COUNTIES THE ABILITY TO TAILOR THIS PORTION OF THE EXERCISE TO WHICHEVER OBJECTIVE THEY WISH TO ACCOMPLISH

DURING THE S.E.T. EXAMPLES-
-EXPERIMENT WITH DIFFERENT OPERATING MODES (DIGITAL,SATELLITE,CW,ETC) .

-DEVELOP A SOLUTION TO A PARTICULAR COMMUNICATIONS PROBLEM WITHIN THEIR RESPECTIVE OPERATING AREA. -BUILD AND TEST DIFFERENT ANTENNAS.

-ACCESS COMMUNICATIONS FROM KNOWN WEATHER RELATED IMPACT AREAS WITHIN THEIR COUNTY.

-PLAN AND EXECUTE A RESPONSE TO A LOCAL EMERGENCY.

-SET UP AND OPERATE FROM A REMOTE LOCATION.
IN OTHER WORDS…PUSH THE COMFORT ZONES! MAKE THIS COMPONENT CHALLENGING YET ENJOYABLE FOR ALL WHO PARTICIPATE. PLEASE PROVIDE A SUMMARY OF COMPONENT C WITH THE S.E.T. REPORT AND ICS FORMS.
SO, THERE YOU HAVE IT.ALL W.PA. SECTION COUNTIES ARE BEING REQUESTED TO PARTICIPATE IN THE FALL SIMULATED EMERGENCY TEST. UNDERSTANDABLY, THERE MAY BE SCHEDULE CONFLICTS IN ONE FORM OR ANOTHER…IN LIGHT OF SUCH CONFLICTS, PLEASE MAKE ARRANGEMENTS FOR SEVERAL OPERATORS TO TAKE SOME PART IN THE EXERCISE.(SUGGESTION- IT MAY PROVE BENEFICIAL TO HAVE COUNTY EMA IN THE LOOP FOR THE EXERCISE. IT’S BEEN PROVEN TO HELP BUILD STRONGER RELATIONSHIPS AND BETTER UNDERSTANDING BETWEEN AMATEUR RADIO AND SERVED AGENCIES IN THE COUNTY) THE W.PA. SECTION STAFF WISHES THAT ALL WHO PARTICIPATE HAVE A SUCCESSFUL AND ENJOYABLE FALL EXERCISE. REMEMBER- WE’RE ALL ON THE SAME TEAM WHEN IT COMES
TO GETTING THE MESSAGE THROUGH!

73 AND PRESS ON!
STEVE FAZEKAS, W.PA. ASEC
K3FAZ {a} ARRL.NET

Jamboree-on-the-Air

Oct 19-21, 2018
Jamboree-on-the-Air, or JOTA, is the largest Scouting event in the world. It is held annually the third full weekend in October. JOTA uses amateur radio to link Scouts and hams around the world, around the nation, and in your own community. This jamboree requires no travel, other than to a nearby amateur radio operator’s ham shack. Many times you can find the hams will come to you by setting up a station at your Scout camporee, at the park down the block, or perhaps at a ham shack already set up at your council’s camp.

When Is It?
Jamboree-on-the-Air is held the third weekend in October. There are no official hours, so you have the whole weekend to make JOTA contacts. The event officially starts Friday evening during the JOTA Jump Start and runs through Sunday evening.

For more information: https://www.scouting.org/jota/
Question for the club… Do we want to participate?

 

Monitoring Active Storms – Hurricane Watch Net, SATERN

From: http://www.arrl.org/news/arrl-headquarters-hurricane-watch-net-satern-monitoring-active-storms

With active storms in the Atlantic and Pacific basins, ARRL Headquarters, the Hurricane Watch Net (HWN), and the Salvation Army Team Emergency Network (SATERN) are all on alert. The most imminent storm is Hurricane Florence, now a major Category 3 storm, which is set to strike the Carolinas later this week. Hurricane

Watch Net Manager Bobby Graves, KB5HAV, said over the weekend that the net is keeping a close eye on Hurricanes Florence and Isaac, a Category 1 storm that could affect the Lesser Antilles before heading into the eastern Caribbean.

“Florence is expected to affect the US East Coast midweek, [with] Isaac affecting the Windward Islands about the same time,” Graves said. “The impact of Florence could be catastrophic, as it is forecast to make landfall as a Category 4 hurricane.” Graves notes that Charleston, South Carolina, was last hit by Category 4 storm when Hugo made landfall in 1989.

As of 1500 UTC, Florence was some 580 miles south-southeast of Bermuda and 1,240 miles east-southeast of Cape Fear, North Carolina, with maximum sustained winds of 115 MPH. The storm is moving west at 13 MPH.

The HWN has not announced any activation plans. The net traditionally uses 14.325 MHz during daylight hours and 7.268 MHz after dark. “With propagation being extremely poor to nonexistent on 20 meters, we may be forced to operate on both bands simultaneously,” Graves said. WX4NHC at the National Hurricane Center (NHC) is currently in a planning stage and anticipating activating Wednesday, September 12, through Friday, September 14. When WX4NHC activates, it will operate cooperatively with HWN as net stations funnel ground-level reports to the Center.

The International SATERN SSB Net has announced plan to activate in response to Hurricane Florence on Thursday, September 13, remaining in operation at least through Saturday, September 15. SATERN operates on 14.265 MHz with 14.312 MHz as an alternative frequency.

“The Salvation Army is already beginning to plan for major deployments of personnel and equipment,” SATERN announced over the weekend.

The Voice over Internet Protocol Weather/Hurricane Net (VoIPWX) is expected to activate late Wednesday or early Thursday.

Storms in the Pacific include Tropical Storm Paul, which is not expected to affect land, and Hurricane Olivia, a Category 1 storm that could threaten Hawaii. The NHC has advised Hawaii residents to monitor the storm’s progress.

Message from Chief Army MARS

As suggested by Billy Joe,  N3VEF/AAR3OY 

 Below is a message put out to MARS Stations (Military Affiliate Radio System)  from Chief Army MARS regarding a Comex exercise we just did.  This is only one example of many such exercises we do in MARS on a regular basis.  I’m passing this along in an attempt to spark an interest in anyone who might want to join MARS.  With the World affairs  the way they are right now, I think having a MARS Licenses is a valuable thing to have.  On are NETS we regularly have the Pentagon (AAR3PNT) CK in, the PA National Guard, TSA Agencies, etc., just to name a few CK in.  Right now I’m the only Licensed MARS Station at the Club.  In the past we’ve had several other members who were in MARS (Doug W3HH, Bobby N3LL, Mac W3MAC, & Sue KA3JKS).  It would be nice to have someone else in the Club with an interest in MARS.  If your Radio isn’t modified to go out of the Amateur Bands, on problem.  We have a system similar to Echolink that allows Stations to CK in using the Internet & the TeamSpeak Program.  Anyone with an interest just get in touch with me.
I’ll be more than glad to Elmer you along.  73 & Happy Labor Day Weekend.
Billy Joe,  N3VEF/AAR3OY

Please distro to all Army MARS members:

*****
Last week, 600 members of both Army and Air Force MARS put their
communication skills to the test during the quarterly DOD comex 18-3.
Responding to a simulated set of circumstances, MARS members were charged
with providing various information reports from the local and county areas
through the MARS HF network to the supported DOD headquarters using a
military standard communications protocol.

Members were further challenged during a portion of the exercise by only
operating during evening/night time hours when propagation is more
challenging. Throughout the exercise, MARS members used both traditional
single channel voice communications as well as establishing communications
links using 2G automatic link establishment.

Thanks to all the MARS stations who trained during this comex. Regardless if
you served as major/minor relay station, a net control station, a duty
officer, or provided your information messages for relay to the supported
headquarters, you are an important link in the communications chain. Well
done! Don’t forget to submit your after action reports so we can continue to
improve how we execute our mission.

English
Chief, Army MARS
*****

Amateur Radio Volunteers Assist California Fire

Amateur Radio Emergency Service® (ARES®) volunteers have pitched in to assist where needed to provide or support communication as catastrophic wildfires have struck California. Volunteers from multiple ARRL Sections in the state have stepped up to help, as some fires remain out of control. The fires have claimed several lives, destroyed more than 1,000 homes, and forced countless residents to evacuate, including radio amateurs. ARRL Sacramento Valley Section Emergency Coordinator (SEC) Greg Kruckewitt, KG6SJT, said this week that things have calmed somewhat compared to the past couple of weeks, with American Red Cross shelter communicators stepping down after 10 days of support. Initially, there were four shelters in Redding. On August 5, the Shasta-Tehama ARES team was able to take its communications trailer to Trinity County to support a shelter in Weaverville opened for Carr Fire evacuees, he said.

“This relieved the Sacramento County ARES volunteers who had been up there for several days,” Kruckewitt said. “For mutual assistance to Weaverville, it is a 4.5- to 5.5-hour drive for the Sacramento Valley Section people who helped out. Communications at the shelter have been important, as power and cell phone coverage is often spotty, with power going off for hours at a time.” All ARES activations for the Carr Fire ended the evening of August 7.

Read the full story here:
http://www.arrl.org/news/amateur-radio-emergency-service-volunteers-assist-in-california-fire-response

2018 Hurricane Season: Some Nets to Know

Caribbean Emergency and Weather Net – Meets daily at 1030Z and 2230Z on 3815 kHz. The Caribbean Emergency and Weather Net was established in 1958 by Colonel Henry Frew, KV4BZ, for the purpose of having a general calling frequency for the Caribbean Islands and their North and South American friends. The net’s original name was the Antilles Emergency Net.
Hurricane Watch Net — 14.325 MHz (day)/7.268 MHz (night). Activated whenever a hurricane is within 300 statute miles of expected land-fall. Disseminates storm information and relays meteorological data to National Hurricane Center via embedded NHC station WX4NHC. Also relays post-storm damage reports and other relevant information.
Intercontinental Net — 7 AM to noon US Eastern Time – 14.300 MHz. Provides a means of emergency communications to any location where the normal means are disrupted by local disaster such as fire, earthquake, storms, floods and terrorist activity.
Maritime Mobile Service Net — 12 PM to 9 PM US EST or 12 PM to 10 PM EDT – 14.300 MHz – The network acts as a weather beacon for ships during periods of severe weather and regularly repeats high seas and tropical weather warnings and bulletins from the National Weather Service and the National Hurricane Center.
14.300 MHz Net Information – More information about nets on 14.300 MHz.
Salvation Army Team Emergency Radio Network (SATERN) – 14.265 MHz – The purpose of the SATERN net is to support the Salvation Army operations in local, regional and international disaster situations, as well as other functions.
VOiP SKYWARN/Hurricane Net — A weekly Prep Net is held on Sundays at 0000 UTC, which is Saturday evenings for most of North America. Join by connecting to the EchoLink WX-TALK conference server, IRLP Reflector 9219 or if necessary to one of the backup systems. Monitor the net during hurricanes and other major severe weather events.
From: Lloyd KA3MSE