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Author Topic: RACES  (Read 10723 times)
LA9XSA
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Posts: 376




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« Reply #30 on: June 05, 2011, 04:56:38 PM »

"Who is "They," anyway?"

Any regime that might be tempted to declare martial law and suspend the constitution.
The US president still has the power to shut down certain radio communications in wartime, that's without suspending the constitution.

The large volume of amateur transmissions? Your kidding, right? What about the large volume of cell phone calls and internet traffic?
Phone traffic is easier to limit and track when you control the inside plant. On amateur radio there's no infrastructure except the beacons and repeaters.

I'm pretty sure you can use just one to record the entire set of HF bands (0-30Mhz).
Due to the physical properties of radio waves, you'd need several strategically placed listening stations to catch everything. Even if you did, you wouldn't have a 100% accurate fix on who sent and received the message - depending on the mode and frequency.

Imagine what the government (who is significantly more well funded and more motivated) can record and analyze. There are not many places to hide a signal nowadays.
Amateur radio - except for emergency response and military use (RACES, MARS etc.) - is supposed by international agreement to be hobby traffic without economic use, so shutting down non-emergency and non-military amateur radio would save wartime monitoring and analysis resources without much negative impact to the war effort.

Not that I think such a scenario is likely in the near future anyway.
« Last Edit: June 05, 2011, 05:01:35 PM by LA9XSA » Logged
K5CWC
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Posts: 22




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« Reply #31 on: June 08, 2011, 03:43:35 AM »

While it's unlikely the President would try to close the airwaves even with the invocation of War Powers, it is entirely reasonable to limit comms on a few frequencies.   That is the main value of a RACES organization these days.   Following a declaration, RACES effectively stops being "Amateur" and becomes "Public Service"   ie: an extension of the certifying government authority be it state of local.   RACES has certain frequencies assigned to it and would have exclusive access.  ARES, on the hand, operates solely within the regulations for the service as Amateur Radio.
While I really can't imagine a situation where RACES wold be activated, it would be widespread and generalized disaster.   AREA would still do their thing and RACES would augment governmental public service entities.
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W0DLR
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Posts: 14




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« Reply #32 on: June 08, 2011, 03:00:49 PM »

I still have my RACES license issued by the FCC signed by Ben F. Waple.  It does not contain an expiration date.

I would help in a RACES situation but I would not waste two seconds of my times with any ARES bunch.
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K1CJS
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Posts: 6055




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« Reply #33 on: June 08, 2011, 03:33:53 PM »

I still have my RACES license issued by the FCC signed by Ben F. Waple.  It does not contain an expiration date.

I would help in a RACES situation but I would not waste two seconds of my times with any ARES bunch.


You may not have a choice, depending on the setup in the area.  In quite a few areas, RACES and ARES are one and the same, even though the participants may not know it.  It is totally dependent on the situations of the locality in which you live.
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W0DLR
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Posts: 14




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« Reply #34 on: June 08, 2011, 04:35:01 PM »

You may not have a choice...

I have a choice.  If ARES is involved here I will not be involved.  I'm not the only one feels that way either.
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K1CJS
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Posts: 6055




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« Reply #35 on: June 09, 2011, 06:20:40 AM »

What I meant, Dave, was that you may believe that the only people you're working with are RACES involved, but there may well be ARES people working with them too.  Recent moves by Emergency Management and Homeland Security are combining those two separate groups--with the individual members unaware of what may be going on.
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AE6ZW
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Posts: 100


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« Reply #36 on: June 16, 2011, 11:54:15 AM »

in Orange County, CA  RACES seems to associate with communications supporting Local Police departments.  they do help such as  bicycle races , walkathon, marathon, etc.    it seems like most of the police departments and sheriff's office organize one under their command.
and  there are some ARES groups , here also. 
many other parts of the country, I have seen where tornadoes are common, their main focus was on tornado watch, and it seems like they were Tornado watch / ARES / RACES  all combined.   
I guess many parts of country , there is not enough amateur radio operators volunteers, so they can not separate ARES, RACES, Tornado watches.
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KI4SDY
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Posts: 1452




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« Reply #37 on: June 19, 2011, 06:20:59 PM »

Exactly, when it is a real disaster, emergency or big community event. It is all hands on deck! The most important thing for the volunteer is to show upGrin
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KS4VT
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Posts: 142




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« Reply #38 on: June 19, 2011, 06:57:06 PM »

Exactly, when it is a real disaster, emergency or big community event. It is all hands on deck! The most important thing for the volunteer is to show upGrin

Yep and the stats from most of the volunteer organizations, like the ARC, is that only 30% registered will actually showup.
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WB6BYU
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Posts: 13458




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« Reply #39 on: June 19, 2011, 08:56:52 PM »

Quote from: KI4SDY
...The most important thing for the volunteer is to show upGrin


Actually, one of the important things is for volunteers to be trained ahead of time and know who to
report to, what to do, and for the served agencies to know how to work with, and what to expect
from, the ham operators.

My motto is, "If you don't use it regularly, it won't work in an emergency."  That applies not only
to skills and equipment, but also to inter-agency relationships.  In the middle of an emergency
is NOT the time to try to introduce yourself to a served agency and learn how they work - it
is too much work at a time when they are already stretched to the limit.  

I've seen this both from the ham side and from the perspective of a Served Agency.  Who are you
going to report to?  What equipment will you be expected to have with you?  What qualifications
do you need to have to accompany a field team?  What type of traffic will you be passing and
to whom?  What protocols will the rest of the hams be using?  What logs do you have to keep?
Where do you fit in the Incident Command System?  How are ham operators allocated to meet
the highest priority needs of multiple agencies?


So, yes, it is important to show up.  But to be effective it is important to be prepared and
trained and familiar with the needs and procedures of the agencies you are going to serve
and the other hams you are going to be communicating with.  All of that should be done
BEFORE there is an emergency.
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