October 2016 Minutes

In Attendance:

Dan Bergman N0DND

Jeremy Smith kc0nuk

Gene Hornung wb0pkp

Jay Rasmussen nx9r

Jaden Smith Visitor

Perry Haake kb0ifm

Darlene Haake Visitor

Stan Coleman n0yxv

Rachelle Lipker Special Guest

  • Introduced Michelle Lipker, the new Executive director of the Red Cross to the club
  • Voted on not having Meeting in December, officers will be nominated in November and voted on in January
  • A quick recap on the club joining. Mike Mathews, President of hastings club, is working on bylaws now and will let us when He gets them written.
  • Discussed once again how to get topics on the Agenda
  • Recap of Harvest of Harmony, Auxcom training, and jeremy gave a short synopsis on the Presentation to the walnut middle school science club.
  • Dan passed on to club CERT members Jon was thinking of a 10 hour a year Minimum
  • Dan gave a Training Scenario that began a lot of discussion on how we would and should prepare for a disaster.
  • Adjourned for the evening

It is a Disaster

At the October meeting we had an exercise to cause some discussion and help us understand just how bad things can be in a disaster. It was a lot of fun and I think we learned just how unprepared we all really are. After the discussion we decided that we would keep doing this and I hope that others will come to the meeting because This was fun, and the more people who are here the funner it will be. Exercise as follows:

***** THIS IS A DRILL ****** THIS IS A DRILL *******

Internet/Cellular Phone/Communications Exercise Your community has just been hit by a disaster — The following conditions now exist: No commercial power will be available for 72 hours. 60% of the power line infrastructure is down. 60% of all radio towers are out of service for 72 hours, with all antennas at a 45 degree angle from normal in the city from North to South. The trunking systems are all out of service – totally.

Land line telephone service is lost to 60% of the community. The cellular telephone system is overloaded, and it takes two hours to get a connection, and then you are limited to using the service for 3 minutes.

***** THIS IS A DRILL ****** THIS IS A DRILL *******

All city, county and state radio networks are reduced to 20% of their normal capacity. Cable TV systems and satellite TV services are completely out of service with no commercial power available. All internet service providers are down and out of service. All internet telephone service is down. 25% of the fire, police and EMS equipment is destroyed. No gasoline or diesel is available from any underground storage tanks, and the local government has taken over all overhead fuel storage tanks for their use. If you can demonstrate to them that your use will support the recovery effort you may be able to secure a limited amount of 5 gallons of fuel.

***** THIS IS A DRILL ****** THIS IS A DRILL *******

You have planned ahead and have an emergency gasoline powered generator to power your radio equipment, your generator uses 0.7 gallons of fuel per hour of operation. How much fuel do you have on hand (this may include your automobiles fuel tanks, if you have a way to get the fuel out)? You have; _____ gallons of fuel, and can operate your generator for _____ hours. If you use your automobile to charge your batteries, the fuel consumption will be MUCH higher.

Do you have food for 72 hours for all members of your household? An MRE will feed two average persons per meal – 1200 calories each. Do you have five or ten gallons of drinking water? Tomorrow was your day to replenish your supply.

Do you have a way to keep warm during cold weather, bed rolls, blankets, fireplace, gas or charcoal grill (for cooking as well)?

***** THIS IS A DRILL ****** THIS IS A DRILL *******

With the loss of 60% of the radio towers we have lost a great deal of homes and many people will require shelter. Is emergency shelter available for 60% of the population and can you access your camping gear, if it did not get destroyed with your house? Are you prepared to not just survive, but can you help for distances in excess of 40 miles? Do you have emergency radios, both local(FM and HF? Do you have spare/portable antennas, tools, etc.?

For now amateur radio provides the only communications link within the community and to the outside world. How do you intend to help our served agencies, EOC’s, hospitals, health and welfare, emergency shelters, disaster support agencies and provide local media outlets with emergency information for the public?

Your radio tower was damaged, your home lost 40% of the roof. Do you have an emergency antenna support?

Do you have a 30 watt or higher power mobile unit installed in your automobile? If this unit has not been used in the last 7 days, count it as out of service.

***** THIS IS A DRILL ****** THIS IS A DRILL *******

Would you need to go to the local store to purchase (they will all be out of everything in one hour, if not currently destroyed) food, water, batteries, gasoline (none available), bed rolls, parts for replacement antennas? If you are using any portable radio (including cell phones) that transmits, do you have an alkaline/Ni-MH battery pack, with spare batteries? If not, count that radio out of service after 4 hours of use.

If your rechargeable battery pack was not charged in the last 72 hours count that battery pack as out of service. If you have not used that portable radio in the last 7 days count it as out of service.

Do you have an HF radio, including portable antenna and emergency power source, that was operated in the last 7 days? If not, count it as out of service.

All amateur repeaters are presently out of service. Can you communicate without their use on a simplex frequency, and do you know which one to use? *****

THIS IS A DRILL ****** THIS IS A DRILL *******

This short scenario can be used to judge how prepared you are and help you determine what you need to do to get prepared.

SOP

One of the major things we need to do to get in line with ICS/NIMS requirements is to develop an SOP. There are a lot of good SOP documents that we can use to write our own. Fortunately we do not have to re-invent the wheel. So, Here is a link to one such Document that we can use.

http://www.mcinares.org/Marion%20County%20ARES%20Communications%20Plan%20v1.2.pdf

We will vote on who, what, why, and where. Take some time to look over this, give your input. Do we need a committee to do this? Dan, N0DND is willing to put in the time to write it up in concert with our capabilities and our communities needs.

Preparing for a Disaster

As many of you know a few were honored to attend a training session put on by the department of homeland security called Auxcom. It was training to to help the ham community and other radio services learn to communicate when disasters happen. The old saying is hams will work when nothing else does, this is true, but there is so much more to it than that and this course helped us to understand the many different services we can provide and how we provide that service. It is also our responsibility to help the emergency service providers understand who we are, what we are capable of, and how we can use those capabilities to help them save lives. Many of have had other training to be more involved and can be an important tool when it comes to saving lives.

We live in a region where we are relatively blessed with tranquility most of the time. We normally do not have major destructive storms like they have in the south, we generally are not a target of terrorism, and we are not a major industrial area. However, any and all of these thing could happen here. We have two major rail lines that pass thru GI, we have a blossoming ethanol industry, and we have seen the destructive power of tornadoes here. It is incumbant on all of us to take these possibilities seriously and we as a club need to get ourselves organized. If participation is low that we need to find a way to get others involved.

So with that, here are a few things we should start doing right away. We need to write and adopt a SOP, one that has been written with the knowledge and input of our emergency personal whom we will be working with, Agreements should be obtained with our sister clubs on use of equipment, and a general training regimen should be instituted.

There is a lot we can do to help. But it does take a little bit of commitment. You will as a ham, have to have credentials. You will have to pass background checks. In today’s day and age, with liability and all that goes with putting yourself out there,  just showing up in an emergency is likely not going to be useful to anyone. Our emergency people cannot let you get involved in the process if you are not trained and credentialed in some way.

As all of this goes forward, we would encourage everyone’s participation. Consider all of this an upgrade on what we have already been doing. Think of it like this, what we are doing now is bringing our organization in line with ICS/NIMS and other Homeland security procedures. Being able to bring our procedures up to date, and our training up to date, and doing it as a club will allow us to operate in a proficient and useful manner with a high degree of professionalism.

We welcome your comments and look forward to talking about and working on it together. See you all on Thursday.

Auxcom Class completed

We would like to thank FEMA and the Department of homeland security, and our local Emergency manager for bringing this class to town and giving us a chance to participate. We learned a lot of information and procedures, including the command structure and possible requirements of the ham community if something were to happen. We have a lot of exposure to risk with the whether and industry. the likely hood that at some point we will be called on to help with emergency operations is a good bet. It was a great class, and many of the procedures will be incorporated into our field operations and future planning. We will have more information posted as time permits. Also sometime this week I will put links on our link page for field guides that those interested in being available for emergency ops should familiarize yourselves with. It is also recommend that if you have not taken any of the fema courses that you take the time and do the training, it is free, and I suspect will be required. 

Club Agenda October 2016

  • What’s Next?
  • New Red Cross management. Rachelle Lipker, the new Director for the Red Cross will be in attendance.
  • Are going to have a December Meeting?
  • Update on Joining the clubs under one flag and 501 (3)((c))
  • How to get topics on the website for discussion.
  • Harvest of Harmony recap! Great Job everyone.
  • Auxcom recap- Applying what we learned to our regular functions and activities.
  • Presentation to Walnut Middle School Science Club Summary
  • SOP, Training, Credentials, CERT Members, minimum Hours a year.
  • A Fun Exercise

 

 

I want to welcome everyone to the GIARS Meeting Thursday October 19th at 7:30pm at the red Cross Building, the usual spot. Hope to see you all there.

Harvest Of Harmony 2016

Another successful Harvest of Harmony Parade. Thanks to those who participated. It was fun as it always is to get together with the guys and practice our hobby. For those that don’t know, the Parade is an opportunity for us to help the city with crowd control, help with staging, and the passing of information to those that need it. From my own station, or assignment, I get to spend a little time with our cities finest, and time chatting with our cities emergency operations manager.

Also, the bands were great to listen too and the work many put into is quite visible, and the weather this year was spectacular.        

And it was another great time to share our hobby and friendships with family

 

Ed, KG0OO, was the organizer and responsible for our opportunity to be able to help with this event. A lot of thanks to Ed for giving us this opportunity.

September 2016 Minutes

  • Talked about the state fair and how well we performed
  • Ed talked about Harvest of Harmony volunteers, meeting time and assignments
  • Discussed Auxcom training
  • Discussed joe’s, KB9TBX, off to give the club members and their spouses free concealed carry training.
    • As busy as season is it is thought to be better scheduled in the Spring
    • Will talk to Joe about this.
  • Shortened Business Meetings
    • It has been determined that most of the club bussiness will be carried out on the website.
    • Only short discussion n business and voting during meeting
    • Discussions and new agenda items will be posted.
    • Discussions open to all
    • Remainder of meeting will be open for open discussions, activities, and if desired food, coffee. 

The 2016 Fair Update- Thanks Everyone

I would like to thank all the volunteers who donated time and effort to making this years operation at the 2016 Nebraska State Fair a success. We were noticed by management and our presence was appreciated. Speaking just for myself we had a great time. It was good to see members bring their family out and it was good to see some young people participating in the things we do to help out. Hope it leads to a few more licensed Hams. I, for one, hope to volunteer a little more time next year and encourage everyone else to do the same. Maybe next year if there are enough volunteers we could plan some club activities and even some training into the activities related to the fair.

I would also like to thank the out of town Hams who showed up to help out (Jan). As you can see it was fun and there was a little clowning around going on.

I do not have the volunteer numbers at my disposal, but considering we lost one of our fulltime participants this year the hours contributed were almost equal to the previous year, so well Done GIARS!

Keeping Communications Alive in the New Century