News

PARC Field Day 2012 Results


Call Used:
W5WX

GOTA Station Call: N5HPJ

ARRL/RAC Section: WTX

Class: 3A

Participants: 21

Club/Group Name: Panhandle Amateur Radio Club

Power Source(s): Generator, Battery, Solar, Other: Modified Exercise Bicycle with a homebrew generator

Power Multiplier: 2X

Bonus Points:
100% Emergency power: 300 points
Media Publicity: 100 points
Set-up in Public Place: 100 points
Information Booth: 100 points
NTS message to ARRL SM/SEC: 100 points
W1AW Field Day Message: 100 points
Natural power QSOs completed: 100 points
Site Visit by invited served agency official: 100 points
GOTA Bonus: 0 points
Submitted via the Web: 50 points
Educational activity: 100 points
Total Bonus Points: 1,150

Score Summary:
Total QSOs     CW: 59    Digital: 176     Phone: 449
Total Points    CW: 118    Digital: 352     Phone: 449    Total: 919   Claimed Score = 1,838

Submitted by:
Christopher Seright, KE5ZRT
2924 S. Carter St
Amarillo, TX 79103
E-mail: KE5ZRT@gmail.com

PARC 2012 ARRL FIELD DAY SLIDE SHOW:

http://s926.photobucket.com/albums/ad106/tornado-alley-rats/PARC-Field-Day-2012/?albumview=slideshow


RAC Ham Cram Class 2 of 3 Results 4/20/12

Last Friday, 5 students attended the PARC Ham Cram Class to obtain their technician license to become emergency communicators for the Panhandle Regional Advisory Council (RAC). All 5 were hospital employees in Amarillo. All but one student were able to successfully complete the exam resulting in an 80% pass rate. As most of you know, this is difficult subject matter for someone without a background in communications or electronics. The one student has not given up and is studying on her own and will attend the next class as well. I am certain that she will do well in her next exam session.

The next RAC Ham Cram is scheduled for 8:30 AM on Friday April 27th, at 1900 Line Avenue. Anyone is welcome to sit in on the class. If you are an experienced ham, I WILL call on you for assistance!

The PARC ARES group is eager to continue in our partnership with the RAC in licensing and training emergency communicators, and also in receiving CPR and first-aid training from the RAC.

 


Donated Ham Gear Available for Bid

A pick-up load of amateur radio gear was graciously donated to the Panhandle Amateur Radio Club (PARC) and is being silently auctioned to raise funds for the club. The list of available equipment is attached to this post. To place a bid, simply email Bob Sanders, N5TBD, PARC President at bsanders@suddenlink.net. List the item(s) you are wanting along with your bid for each item. All reasonable bids will be considered.

Click Here: Donated_equipment_list(1)

Closing date for bidding is Saturday May 5th

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Panhandle RAC and PARC ARES Partnership News

The mission of the Panhandle Regional Advisory Committee (RAC) is to provide the infrastructure and leadership necessary to develop an inclusive emergency healthcare system within Trauma Service Area A. As you may know, the RAC has recently received a Homeland Security grant to establish an emergency communications system at the hospitals here in the Texas panhandle area. The PARC ARES group has been assisting to coordinate and facilitate the RAC in their efforts. At our last ARES meeting we completed the programming and assembly of 17 mobile radios and power supplies. In April, the PARC ARES group is hosting 3 individual 6-hour “Ham Cram” Technician Class licensing study sessions followed by a VE session for potential emergency communicators from each of the panhandle hospitals. We anticipate a long term working relationship with the RAC. There are several opportunities coming up in which ARES members may participate:

  • The RAC has invited ARES members to attend a regional planning meeting on Thursday March 22nd 3:00-5:00 pm at the Northwest Texas Hospital Pavilion Auditorium, 7201 Evans Drive in Amarillo.
  • The RAC is planning an exercise simulating tornado strike in the Pampa and Borger communities which will take place on May 23rd. We may need communications assistance at the hospitals from hams in Pampa and Borger areas. Our SKYWARN storm spotters may piggyback in the exercise as well. More details will be provided very soon.
  • PARC ARES will assist with a monthly communications test in the form of a roll call type net using tactical callsigns on the 1st Wednesday of each month at 8:30 am utilizing the Caprock Intertie linked repeater system. We may need assistance from ARES members to either serve as NCS or to provide communications at the panhandle hospitals in the event that hospital staff are not available. We will definitely need the assistance of hams in the remote areas in the panhandle to begin building a relationship with the outlying hospitals as a POC to ARES for your communities. Please contact us if you can provide assistance.
  • At our regular scheduled ARES training meeting on Tuesday April 10th at 7:30 pm, we anticipate that the RAC will provide CPR and basic first aid training to our ARES members. This should be confirmed within the day or so. More information will be provided as these plans become more concrete.

We look forward to working with the RAC in the future, and ARES will need your help!


March Ham Cram Results

This is a QST from KE5ZRT…

I am proud to announce that Amarillo now has two new hams: Armando and Benjamin. Listen for these new KF5*** callsigns on the air soon. Both attended the Ham Cram study session today and both passed the test, resulting in a 100% pass rate for this study session. I want to thank co-instructor Neal Lowe, W5PVI; supporters Dan McCabe, WA8YYE, and Monty Denney, KC5OMK; facilities supporter Bob Sanders, N5TBD; VE John Ashurst, K5FS, and VE liaison Terra Seright, KE5ZRU. Without all of your help these classes simply would not be possible. I am looking forward to the next Ham Cram sessions in April that are scheduled for members of the Panhandle RAC.

73 y’all

KE5ZRT Clear


Disaster Preparedness and Fire Safety Information Events

The Amarillo/Potter/Randall Office of Emergency Management would like to invite you to come and learn how to best prepare you, your family, and your property against disasters. Over the next couple of weeks, there will be two opportunities to gather disaster and fire preparedness materials at the designated United Supermarkets below.

Saturday, March 10 – Disaster Preparedness and Fire Safety Information (1 p.m. to 4 p.m. at the United Supermarket at 3400 River Road, Amarillo, TX)

Saturday, March 17 – Disaster Preparedness and Fire Sagety Information (1 p.m. to 4 p.m. at the United supermarket at 4701 S. Washington, Amarillo, TX)

Information from participating organizations will include:

  • Warning systems – making sure you have multiple avenues to get notified
  • NOAA All Hazards Radio – ensuring your radio is programmed with the Potter or Randall code so that you get alerted
  • Volunteering – opportunities available
  • Ready, Set, Go! Fire book – preparing your family and home for wildfire threats
  • Disaster Recovery – steps you should take following a disaster
  • Business Continuity – planning and prepping your business for a disaster

More information can be found at http://oem.amarillo.gov

Hope to see you there

 


PARC Christmas Party is Cancelled (Again)

Due to the winter weather and road conditions the Christmas party has been canceled again. We will discuss possible rescheduling at the next club meeting in January.


W5WX Christmas Party Cancelled / Postponed

The consenus is that we should cancel the Christmas Party that was to be held tomorrow night (12/6/11).

We will try to reschedule for another time and/or place. When this is done we will notify everyone.

Please put the word out…

73,

Bob


Army MARS Seeking Volunteers in WTX

What is MARS?

MARS stands for Military Auxiliary Radio System, an organization of some 5,000 US amateur radio operators. They volunteer their time and radio equipment to assist government agencies in the event normal communication channels are disrupted by natural calamity (Hurricane Katrina) or hostile action (9/11/01). The Department of Defense sponsors MARS and allocates special frequencies for the use of members. The Army, Air Force, and Navy-Marine Corps each have their own MARS branch. Army MARS nubers about 2,600 members.

What MARS does:

We train constantly to provide voice and digital links for fedreal, state, and local response agencies. MARS is a part of the National Incident Response System (NIMS) established after 9/11/01.

We maintain our own amateur radio equipment in constant readiness for response to any support request.

We operate state, regional, and national HF radio networks on a daily basis to perfect our operating skills and test our equipment. In an emergency, these nets are ready for immediate action.

We participate in exercises with other emergency entities including the Army Northern Command (ARRNORTH), the Transportation Security Administration (TSA), the Federal Emergency Management agency (FEMA), Texas State Department of Emergency Management ant the Texas Military Forces. Members qualify on FEMA first responder courses.

We develop and apply new technology such as HF-Email (Winlink) and other advanced digital modes.

We coordinate with the American Radio Relay League, American Red Cross, Salvation Army and of course Air Force, and Navy-Marine corps MARS in eemergency relief planning and response operations.

History of MARS:

In 1925, when radio was very new, the US Army Signal Corps enrolled a group of civilian amateurs to help train military operators. The Army Amateur Radio System (AARS) continued in operation until World War II, when all on-air activity by amateurs was suspended in the United States. The organization reactivated in 1948 under the MARS name. Separate Air Force and Navy-Marine Corps MARS branches were born soon afterwards.

Members of all three performed admirable service durng the Korean and “Vietnam Wars and again in Operation Desert Storm by keeping the troops at overseas in touch with family and friends at home. Hundreds of thousands of “MARS-grams” and phone connections were handled without charge.

In 1994, the Army’s Directorate of Military Support called on MARS operators after the Northridge Earthquake in Southern California. That was the worst natural disaster recorded in the US up to that time, and all commercial communications failed. Army MARS delivered the information necessary for planning immediate relief operations. From that point on, emergency communications backup has been the primary mission of MARS.

How Army MARS is Organized:

We are a unit of the Network Enterprise Technology 9th Signal Command (ARMY). (th Signal Command is responsible for the Army’s network operations and security worldwide. Headquarters is at Fort Huachuca, Arizona, a major Army signals and intelligence base south of Tucson.

Chief Army MARS, james E. Griffin, has a fulltime core staff at headquarters which consists of civilian employees or contractors. These include the operting staff of the MARS Gateway Station, AAA9USA, at Fort Huachuca.

Chief Griffin is also assisted by a special staff of volunteers appointed for their expertise form the general membership.

In the field, the basic unit is the state, led by a volunteer state director and his staff–assistant director, adiminstrative officer; emergency operations officer, training officer, all appointed from the membership based on experience and demonstrated leadership.

States are organized into 10 regions with a command structure just like the states. Region leadership is also an all volunteer position.

Privileges of Membership:

Army MARS activity is a challenging extension of your interest in amateur radio. you put your ham skills to work in meaningful public service.

you will operate on specially assigned military radio frequencies. with additional qualification, you may join nets serving TSA, FEMA, and other frontline government agencies.

If you previously served in the military, Army MARS offers a meeting ground for people with similar interests and experiences.

Army MARS members have the oportunity to take part in experimenting and testing the newest modes of communications.

Provide emergency communications in support of the Army, a Federal Agency or incident Commander is the ultimate test of operating skills and will give you satisfaction rarely found elsewhere in amateur radio.

To join you must:

  • Be 17 years of age or older. The signature of a parent or legal guardian is required when an applicant is under 18 years of age.
  • Be a United States Citizen or resident alien.
  • Possess a valid amateur radio license issued by the Federal Communications Commission.
  • Possess a station capable of operating on MARS frequencies, which are outside the typical FCC-authorized amateur bands. Typical amateur transceivers require modification.
  • Agree to operate a minimum of 15 hours per calendar quarter with 9 hours being on VHF and/or HF networks.
  • Successfully complete the Army MARS basic training course
  • Understand and accept that MARS is not a hobby; it’s a service to your country. Membership requires serious commitment to observe rules and requirements.

More about MARS:

For information about the Army MARS organization in your state, or to obtain a membership application, visit:

For a local contact regarding Army MARS in the Texas Panhandle area, contact Mike McGlynn, W5MJM

806-853-9460

W5MJM@hotmail.com

 


ARES NET SCHEDULE CHANGE- November 2011

To promote and encourage more regular check-is and participation in the PARC ARES nets,  the committee has decided to conduct WEEKLY nets on Thursdays at 7:30 pm local time, rather than on the first and third Tuesdays as we have conducted the nets previously. Additionally we will incorporate pertinent training material into these nets.

The purpose of these nets is to verify which repeaters and operators are capable of responding in an actual communications emergency and to pass information, traffic and training amongst the ARES group in the Texas and Oklahoma panhandle counties.

Please participate in the PARC ARES nets each Thursday at 7:30 pm on any Caprock Intertie linked repeater beginning in November 2011. Visit www.CaprockIntertie.org for repeater information.

To serve as NCS for the PARC ARES Net contact N5TBD ARES Chair or N5YXN ARES Vice-Chair.


ARRL West Texas New Website

The national association of amateur radio in West Texas is building a new website with many useful and informative features. Please visit www.ARRLWTX.org

This site (Panhandle ARES) now features an RSS feed widget in the sidebar column to display updates and news from ARRL WTX. Click on the links to view the full story.


October 1st PARC VE Test Session Cancelled

Terra and I will be out of town for the Tour D’ Cotton bicycle race in Childress and will not be available for the regularly scheduled VE session following the PARC meeting this weekend.

If anyone would like to alternatively schedule a private test session please contact me at 806-231-4227 or KE5ZRT@gmail.com. 73 de KE5ZRT dit dit


Field Classes and Exams for Introduction to Emergency Communication Ready to Launch

EC-001 Updates:

The infrastructure to re-launch field instruction in ARRL’s Emergency Communications training program is now in place.

The printed course transcript is now available in the ARRL store: www.arrl.org/shop/The-ARRL-Introduction-to-Emergency-Communication-Course/

Field exams for the new course have been developed and are available from the ARRL Continuing Education Program office. You can review requirements for registering as a Field Examiner and find the information you’ll need to perform those responsibilities, including instructions for ordering exams, at: www.arrl.org/emergency-communications-field-examiners

You can find authorized ARRL Field Instructors and Field Examiners by conducting a search of our database at: www.arrl.org/find-a-fi and www.arrl.org/find-a-fe.

We’ve also just launched a new searchable database for Field Instructors and Field Examiners to register their classes and/or exam sessions on our website www.arrl.org/find-an-emcomm-class-exam.

 

EC-001 Field Instructors Needed

Field Instructors are volunteers who commit their time and expertise to offer classroom instruction of the ARRL Amateur Radio Emergency Communications Course. Volunteer instructors may now conduct classroom instruction covering the material in the new Introduction to Emergency Communication course.

Field Instructors must be registered with the ARRL Continuing Education Program and must meet certain requirements:

  • Completion of EC-001 (old or new version)
  • Completion of FEMA IS-100, 200, 700 and 800
  • Must be 18 years of age with Technician or higher license
  • ARRL member
  • Recommendation of Section Manager

If you are interested in serving as an ARRL Field Instructor for EC-001 you may submit an application here.


The 2011 Bike MS Wild West Ride was a Tremendous Success

I just wanted to express my deepest thanks to you and your team of ham communication experts!

The 2011 Bike MS Wild West ride was a tremendous success, and has already raised over $100,000 to help end the devastating effects of Multiple Sclerosis! A large portion of the reason for that success lies in the members of your team of awesome volunteers! The hams as a group rose to the challenge again this year to provide our riders with an unsurpassed level of safety and security as they plodded along those 100.2 heat scorched miles from Amarillo to Canadian.

Your team expertly facilitated on of the most dramatic events in the history of Wild West rides. As the air temperatures on Saturday rose over 107*F, the pavement temperatures crested 125*F, and the heat index soared through the roof; The safety of the riders became endangered, and the situation grew critical as riders began suffering the effects of the extreme temperatures. The decision to call off the ride on Saturday was made, despite it not being a popular decision by a few riders, and the hams were able to get this information to the riders out on the course in an amazingly short time. It is quite possible that the swift actions of the hams and the effective use of coordinated ham communications during this crisis event may have saved multiple riders from grave danger. This is the exact reason that the hams are so critical to our ride and the exact reason that we are so thankful to have you as team members.

Please relay to your team my personal and heartfelt gratitude for volunteering for this event again this year and please relay to the Caprock Intertie organization our gratitude for maintaining such a useful and pertinent system that continues to provide a definite measure of sefety and security to the entire population of the tri-state region.

73,

Matthew Carter, KF5CBT


New WTX Section Leader

It is official!  Bill Roberts, W5NPR, of Alpine, TX takes the reins of the WTX Section from retiring SM John Dyer, AE5B.  Bill Roberts presently serves the ARRL as the West Texas Section Traffic Manager and is alternate net control for the Big Bend Emergency Net and the West Texas Section Net.  Bill has agreed to act as Interim WTX SM and will run for a full term at the next election in the fall.  Congratulations Bill!

—  John Dyer, AE5B, West Gulf Division Assistant Director

John Dyer, AE5B, and Carla Dyer, K5RLA, have been in charge of the West Gulf Division’s booth operations at ham fests and conventions for several years.   Under their supervision, the booth has taken on a professional appearance and has set records in recruitment.  John retired as WTX SM in June following several years of dedicated service to the ARRL  Since no good deed goes unpunished, Director Woolweaver appointed John as Assistant Director for Membership in July.  “John has been doing the job for several years.  He just did not have the title and now he does!” reported Director Woolweaver.

 


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