DELARANEWS

ARES

Stan Broadway, N8BHL Ohio SEC, Delaware EC

The Texas Effect part Duex

The Texas Effect, Part Deux Last month, we talked about the winter Texas storm being a wakeup that was in the “couldabeen” category. It couldabeen a lot worse. It wasn’t until a week or so ago that I learned how close it came to being really bad. Remember back to our 2015 “Blackout” SET; there are three US grids- Texas and the two larger grids. Recall that they are interdependent, theories are that if one were to shut down, they’d all eventually crumble and the nation wouldn’t see power restored for months. Sound a little far- fetched? Can’t happen to me? Read on. This provides an understandable display of the facts surrounding the power loss during the storm. The Texas grid is a little less dependent on the other two, but they are tied together. Here’s the kicker: the Texas Grid was four minutes from total collapse. In the amount of time for one repeater timeout, it’s possible a terrible chain of events would have started. If you think it can’t happen here… it nearly did, and the majority of the population was none the wiser. All that contributes to the importance of our “Next Step” NVIS Day exercise! This year, we’re going to take a couple steps forward to make it more fun, and more challenging. Here’s what we’re thinking: • Goal 1: Construct a working NVIS antenna (or several) and try them out for performance. • Goal 2: Operate with a completely off-grid power source (battery, solar, generator, whatever) • Goal 3: Make contact with your district net or DEC on HF (DEC’s make your info known!) • Goal 4: Make contact with the Sarge on 3902 • Goal 5: Send a message to W8SGT: o Use ~any~ system possible- voice, fldigi, Winlink, CW, doesn’t matter just send us a note: o Your callsign is operational at your location using your antenna type with how many operators o You can use your local/district net with a normal message format (they can upload to Buckeye Net, OHDEN or voice contact with Sarge. o Lacking the above, you can send direct to Sarge while making your test contact above. • Goal 6: Have fun; take a break for the grill and lunch! While it’s a solid activity to just build and test antennas, we thought it would be fun to introduce the challenge of actually doing something with them- getting a specific message out is much more of a challenge because you need to pre-arrange your local/district nets and you need to be able to find and make a solid contact with them and the Sarge! I really hope this will be a learning experience for you! We need to be ready with supplies, antennas, alternate power and working radios because IF something like this were to actually happen, it will come fast and hard. We won’t have time to search around the house for our “go bag” contents. My suggestion is to have a list, with needed items and their location. I don’t particularly worry that you have a bag completely stocked… radio batteries will go dead, we will not remember the finer points of how to program and use them, and we will be less efficient in the field. I suggest using your radios frequently. This assures they’ll actually work, and that you will remember ~how~ to make them work. To me, it’s worth an extra 15 minutes to then consult your list, quickly grab those items that are not in your bag, and be much more efficient in the field. As we get back into more of our public service projects, remember net procedures, proper radio etiquette, and preparation.

Amateur Radio is more than

a hobby- it becomes an

important service when

other forms of

communication fail. It’s up

to all of us to stay ready,

stay trained, and stay

available. We could be

required on a moment’s

notice.

Delaware County ARES is part of the national ARRL program. We rely on our volunteers. We operate during several large public events including the national-level Ironman competition. We hold a radio net on the 145.19 repeater (no tone) on the first Thursday of every month at 8PM. We hold a training meeting on the second Thursday of every month at 7:30 usually at the Red Cross building. All amateurs are invited! For information, contact Stan, N8BHL the Delaware County Emergency Coordinator, or Joe, K8MP or Craig, W8CR.
DELARANews

ARES

Stan Broadway, N8BHL Ohio SEC,

Delaware EC

The Texas Effect part Duex

The Texas Effect, Part Deux Last month, we talked about the winter Texas storm being a wakeup that was in the “couldabeen” category. It couldabeen a lot worse. It wasn’t until a week or so ago that I learned how close it came to being really bad. Remember back to our 2015 “Blackout” SET; there are three US grids- Texas and the two larger grids. Recall that they are interdependent, theories are that if one were to shut down, they’d all eventually crumble and the nation wouldn’t see power restored for months. Sound a little far-fetched? Can’t happen to me? Read on. This provides an understandable display of the facts surrounding the power loss during the storm. The Texas grid is a little less dependent on the other two, but they are tied together. Here’s the kicker: the Texas Grid was four minutes from total collapse. In the amount of time for one repeater timeout, it’s possible a terrible chain of events would have started. If you think it can’t happen here… it nearly did, and the majority of the population was none the wiser. All that contributes to the importance of our “Next Step” NVIS Day exercise! This year, we’re going to take a couple steps forward to make it more fun, and more challenging. Here’s what we’re thinking: • Goal 1: Construct a working NVIS antenna (or several) and try them out for performance. • Goal 2: Operate with a completely off-grid power source (battery, solar, generator, whatever) • Goal 3: Make contact with your district net or DEC on HF (DEC’s make your info known!) • Goal 4: Make contact with the Sarge on 3902 • Goal 5: Send a message to W8SGT: o Use ~any~ system possible- voice, fldigi, Winlink, CW, doesn’t matter just send us a note: o Your callsign is operational at your location using your antenna type with how many operators o You can use your local/district net with a normal message format (they can upload to Buckeye Net, OHDEN or voice contact with Sarge. o Lacking the above, you can send direct to Sarge while making your test contact above. • Goal 6: Have fun; take a break for the grill and lunch! While it’s a solid activity to just build and test antennas, we thought it would be fun to introduce the challenge of actually doing something with them- getting a specific message out is much more of a challenge because you need to pre-arrange your local/district nets and you need to be able to find and make a solid contact with them and the Sarge! I really hope this will be a learning experience for you! We need to be ready with supplies, antennas, alternate power and working radios because IF something like this were to actually happen, it will come fast and hard. We won’t have time to search around the house for our “go bag” contents. My suggestion is to have a list, with needed items and their location. I don’t particularly worry that you have a bag completely stocked… radio batteries will go dead, we will not remember the finer points of how to program and use them, and we will be less efficient in the field. I suggest using your radios frequently. This assures they’ll actually work, and that you will remember ~how~ to make them work. To me, it’s worth an extra 15 minutes to then consult your list, quickly grab those items that are not in your bag, and be much more efficient in the field. As we get back into more of our public service projects, remember net procedures, proper radio etiquette, and preparation.

ARES

Stan Broadway, N8BHL

Section Emergency Coordinator - Ohio Emergency Coordinator - Delaware County