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Author Topic: Amateur Radio ICS Resource Descriptions  (Read 1952 times)
K2GW
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« on: July 06, 2005, 10:58:54 AM »

An interesting question from the ARRL SEC reflector:

"Does anyone know if there are Incident Command System resource type definitions for Amateur Radio resources?"

No sense in reinventing the wheel if someone has already done this. And it's obviously to our benefit if we were to use the same ones nationwide.

Let me know if you have any info and I'll post it up there.

73

Gary, K2GW
SNJ SEC
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W3JKS
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« Reply #1 on: July 06, 2005, 02:50:18 PM »

http://www.fema.gov/nims/mutual_aid.shtm

If you examine the "Emergency Management Resources" document, you will find some commo resources have been defined for the 911 folks and Civil Air Patrol.  I have not come across any FEMA-approved definitions for amateur radio yet.

73,
john W3JKS/AAT3BF/AAM3O/AAA9AC
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K2GW
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« Reply #2 on: July 06, 2005, 02:55:39 PM »

I found the answer which was in QST here:

http://www.emcomm.org/ARCT/index.html

Key extract is below.  ARCT stands for Amateur Radio Communication Team.  The major advantage is to provide a standard "menu" of Amateur Radio resources so they be included in served agencies response plans.
 
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The guide below should be used by all ARES, RACES, ACS, and/or other bona fide EMCOMM units. Think of it as a menu. ICS/Logistics officials may order one (or more) complete EMCOMM teams. E.g.- "We need one ARCT Type 1 by 0800 tomorrow. Report to the county fairgrounds." Or, "ala carte": e.g. - "We need one ARCT Type 2 and two ARCT Type 4s ASAP. Have them report to the fire camp at Jefferson High School.

When an order is received by an EC, DEC, SEC, RACES Officer, etc., it is important that they not promise delivery unless they know for sure that they can "deliver the goods" by the time specified. If the time frame is unrealistic, let the person placing the order know. If you as an EC, need to check on the availability of mutual assistance personnel and equipment, before you commit, tell the person when you will "get back to them".

If you can only fill a part of the requested resource, let them know; and ask if that will suffice until you can activate mutual assistance.

The guide itself is just that...a guide. It is intended to have a degree of flexibility. For example: A "Type I" ARCT calls for a staff of 12 operators including 2 "supervisors" (one day shift/one night shift). The remaining 10 might be split into 5 day/5 night; or, 7 day/3 night, etc. at the discretion of the team leader(s).

In another example: Let’s say that an ordering agency needs a Type 1 ARCT, but only sees a need for two mobile units.

By ordering: "one ARCT Type 2" and: "two ARCTs Type 4"; he/she has ordered only what they wish. Later, more resources can be ordered, or some can be "demob’d" (demobilized).

Incident command personnel are not particularly interested as to how an ARCT goes about fulfill its mission. The bottom lines is can a third party message, whether tactical or formal be delivered accurately, efficiently, and in a timely manner.

EMERGENCY AND AUXILIARY LICENSED AMATEUR RADIO

COMMUNICATIONS ORDERING RESOURCE GUIDE

In order to bring amateur radio emergency and auxiliary communication (EMCOMM) resources into compliance with Incident Command System practice and procedures, the follow nomenclatures should be used when amateur radio EMCOMM services are "ordered" during a ICS event. Each "TYPE" team is designed to provide 24/7 coverage, and will be dispatched with its own supervisor who will also serve as the liaison to the incident Communications Coordinator (COMC).

It is proposed that this will be included in the NICC Resource Ordering manual and be used by ICS Logistics personnel for all major (including non-fire) events.


ARCTs

ARCT Type 1 - (Full field station and 4 mobile/portable units)

- Complete amateur radio emergency/auxiliary communications team for single or multiple agency communications.

- Capability: Short range (VHF/UHF) and long range (HF) voice and digital communications for tactical, logistics, health/welfare, administrative, and other radio traffic. Is not dependant upon any outside power source or infrastructure.

- 12 persons including one supervisor and one assistant supervisor. Consists of one ARCT (Type 2 or 3) base station; and four Type 4 units (mobile, portable, or "rovers".


ARCT Type 2 - (Field/base station)

- Capability: Short range (VHF/UHF) and long range (HF) voice and digital communications for tactical, logistics, health/welfare, administrative, and other radio traffic. Is not dependant upon any outside power source or infrastructure.

- 4 (or more) licensed and registered AROs with one or two vehicles.

- 2 must be General class (or higher).

- May be assigned to a specific agency, or for AUX/EMCOMM. at a staging area, CP, EOC, etc. for multiple agency service.


ARCT Type 3 - (Field/base station / no digital)

- Same as ARCT TYPE 2 but without digital capability (VHF packet and/or HF pactor).


ARCT Type 4 (Mobile/portable field units)

- 2 licensed and registered AROs with one or two vehicles.

- Technician class or higher (At least 1 General or higher if available.)

- VHF FM (minimum) equipped, HF mobile/portable desired.

- May be assigned to a specific agency or to supplement/relieve an existing multi-agency ARCT.


ARCT Type 5 - (Mobile/portable field additional support unit)

- 1 individual licensed and registered ARO with vehicle.

- Technician class or higher.

- VHF FM (minimum) equipped.

- Rarely (if ever) ordered singly.

- May be assigned to a specific agency or to supplement/relieve an existing ARCT.


ICS Logistics Officers and/or Communications Unit Leaders should be provided with a current list of persons to notify to activate an ARCT
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KE4SKY
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« Reply #3 on: July 07, 2005, 06:47:52 AM »

These resource typing categories are OK as far as they go, but we also need appropriate descriptors for mobile ATV and other imagery for damage assessment, mobile and portable AX.25 or TCP/IP VHF/UHF packet and HF AMTOR or PACTOR, as well as temporary and portable repeater control operators, system tech support, troubleshooting, logistics, etc.  
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W7STS
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« Reply #4 on: July 13, 2005, 10:03:55 PM »

I have a real problem with the use of these teams.  I would rather have the requestor "tell" me what they really need.  I may have to request people from all corners of the state, and I would rather just request the people and skills I need for that emergency.

The teams approach while well meaning seems like a way to invite more people to the party.  I would prefer that the DECs in my area just tell me what is required.  I.E. I need to man 4 shelters for 5 days and will manage the net from within the EOC.  I have 1 net manager, and 4 operators available.  Can you get a net manager and 4 operators for the 5 day period.

I don't need a whole team for that kind of deployment, and frankly I always want my "local" hams to be in a management roll, as they have the "golden" knowledge of the area, people and propagation.

Rick Aldom - W7STS - SEC Arizona.
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K2GW
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« Reply #5 on: July 14, 2005, 12:07:07 PM »

Rick:

Please don't confuse the Incident Command System Resource descriptions with the ARESMAT teams.

The ICS resource descriptions (mandated by ICS and NIMS) are for a short standard "catalog" description of what is needed by an Incident Commander.  It provides a standardized way of indentifying what resources are needed for a given type of response and in many cases can be used to provide a list of what might be needed before an incident even happens.  

They exist for many other types of resources, such as hazmat teams, fire  crews, etc and that's how IC's are being trained to request resources.  What we're doing here is trying to come up with standard ones for Amateur Radio support.  I doubt your DEC might use the terms whan talking to you, but a Forest Fire IC might.

If you get a request for an ARCT Type 1 team, that means you need to come up with 12 people.  That doesn't mean they need to be a regular team that always works together (but that would be nice) but that you need to find 12 hams.  The leaders for the ad hoc team could be the local DEC's in the area.

73

Gary, K2GW
SNJ SEC



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K2GW
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« Reply #6 on: July 15, 2005, 07:41:48 AM »

>>These resource typing categories are OK as far as they go, but we also need appropriate descriptors for mobile ATV and other imagery for damage assessment, mobile and portable AX.25 or TCP/IP VHF/UHF packet and HF AMTOR or PACTOR, as well as temporary and portable repeater control operators, system tech support, troubleshooting, logistics, etc.

I think the mobile and portable AX.25 or TCP/IP VHF/UHF packet and HF AMTOR or PACTOR is already covered by the one team that includes digital capability, but how about:

Type 6 - Two Mobile ATV or SSTV stations capble of relaying images back to a command post fromm an on scene location.

Type 7 - Portable 2 meter repeater or 440/2 meter crossband repeater with control operators.

We can flesh out the details once we agree on the resource "mission".  I wouldn't recommend getting too specialized beyond this.

As for the the tech support & trouble shooting I need a little help in the definitions.  

Logistics functions ( food and shelter, etc.) are probably already typed for other agencies (ARC, SA, etc.)

73

Gary, K2GW
SNJ SEC
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WA4MJF
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« Reply #7 on: July 15, 2005, 12:39:28 PM »

I agree with you, gary.  ICS is something
that applies to the chiefs.  The indians,
like me, just need to be told what to do.

The chiefs, SEC, ASECs, DECs, ECs, etc, need to
know the 50 cent terms, but need to brief
the indians in a langauge that they're
familiar with.

73 de Ronnie
OBS/OES
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KC0QNB
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Posts: 30




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« Reply #8 on: July 31, 2005, 06:02:53 PM »

I am glad someone else in ham radio in interested in the ICS system. I have found a source for several forms in pdf format and some in doc format but as was stated they are not exactly what we need to do what we do, so I embarked on a one ham mission using my favorite office suite (not microsoft)and started redoing some of the basic forms that will be useful to us in a format that we would understand and therefore would use. Here is a link
http://www.nimsonline.com/download_center/index.htm#forms
there are different "flavors" of the same basic forms depending on mission more or less.
If anyone wants to help me out in the future conversion process let me know. 73 Ryan kc0qnb@charter.net
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W7STS
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« Reply #9 on: August 13, 2005, 03:06:58 PM »

I have taken the NIMS training and understand "typing" of resources.  What I fail to see is the advantage to an operational planner in requesting a group of communicators.  I am of the opinion that having 12 guys with radios standing around looking for a purpose is probably not good management of resources.

We are not a strike team, we are not a task force, but we might be a part of either.  

"Typing" is good for a lot of items, like generators, so that you get the 100KW 480V 3ph equipment you need instead of the 100KW single phase 120V puppy.  It's good for Helicopters, and trucks, but I don't think ordering a litter of hams is all that good an idea.

Just my 2 cents....

Rick
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KC0QNB
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« Reply #10 on: August 14, 2005, 05:03:43 AM »

I have not taken an ICS online course yet, but I will, that is a promise I have made to myself. As fars as ICS and Amateur radio go however, it's probably a good idea for "us" to take a course, so we understand the way the system is supposed to work, if nothing else.
I do however think we should use the ICS forms that relate to what we do, communicate, the other management stuff is not really our problem.
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K2GW
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« Reply #11 on: August 15, 2005, 05:46:12 AM »

>>I have taken the NIMS training and understand "typing" of resources. What I fail to see is the advantage to an operational planner in requesting a group of communicators. I am of the opinion that having 12 guys with radios standing around looking for a purpose is probably not good management of resources.

Check out the types of resources already listed in NIMS and you'll see that teams of people for SAR, triage, etc are already defined.  There not always just equipment descriptors as much as capability.

For the ham resources, think of them more as a "system" including radios, antennas and operators to provide communications from about four locations to one another.

73

Gary
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KE4SKY
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« Reply #12 on: June 12, 2006, 09:44:23 AM »

The existing communications resource typing on www.nimsonline.com which is used for Civil Air Patrol is fairly close to what could be a template for amateur radio.  

Type IV teams serve as independent communications relay points.

Type III teams support local incident operations

Type II teams support regional incident operations under the Emergency Management Assistance Compact (EMAC) with multiple agencies.

Type I teams, would support operations during Incidents of National Significance requiring prolonged, sustained, incident management operations and support activities with multiple agencies and jurisdictions.

I compiled a table of what this could look like, with suggested composition for teams.  If anyone would like a look, send me an email.
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