I haven’t heard of many news stories covering amateur radio’s role in Hurricane Harvey relief and recovery yet, but here are a couple of stories. And, at the end, is a link to the ARRL’s coverage so far.
HARVEY AFTERMATH: Ham Radio activated for emergency communication (with video). TYLER, Texas (KETK) – After Hurricane Harvey knocked out electricity and cell towers for thousands of people, emergency communication services are in place. “Sister groups at the coast would be activated right now,” John Newman, Ham Radio Operator, said. “Because some of the cities affected from Harvey have lost everything as far as communications.” Ham radio in Tyler is on standby to send more help.
Why Amateur Radio Operators Are Watching Hurricane Harvey. Emergency response teams and communities are readying for Hurricane Harvey’s potentially devastating impacts. Amateur radio enthusiasts are, too. In a statement released earlier today, the American Radio Relay League released a statement saying that its members–amateur radio enthusiasts known as ham radio operators–were ready. That’s because ham operators play a big part in disaster response, from monitoring and reporting on storms to providing a method of communication when other methods are down.
Amateur Radio Volunteers Assisting Where Needed in Hurricane Response. Amateur Radio Emergency Service (ARES®) volunteers are pitching in to support communication at some Red Cross shelters in South Texas in the ongoing aftermath of catastrophic and unprecedented flooding resulting from Hurricane Harvey. ARES members also are serving as net control liaisons to the Harris County Office of Emergency Management (OEM). At least 3 dozen volunteers were assisting at shelters. Another dozen were on tap to serve as OEM liaisons. ARRL Emergency Preparedness Manager Mike Corey, KI1U, said the Red Cross is in need of Red Cross-trained shelter managers and volunteer management specialists. Anyone interested should contact him.
A variety of emergency, health-and-welfare, traffic, and tactical nets in South Texas are active on HF at various times of the day as well as on a wide array of VHF and UHF repeaters, which remain available as needed. The Salvation Team Emergency Radio Network (SATERN) has been active on 14.265 MHz, while the Military Auxiliary Radio Service (MARS) has been using the 5.330.5 (USB) interoperability channel on 60 meters. As of mid-week, Harvey, now a tropical storm, was headed northeast toward Louisiana, where ARES volunteers are on standby.