Emcomm Radio 101

Emcomm Radio 101 PowerPoint PPT Presentation


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You should be able to defineWhy are we here?Discussion of proper operationsWhat equipment do you need?Minimum requirements?Suggestions?What is the Communication Plan?Introduction to non-amateur radiosSummary. Objectives. 2. Snohomish County RACES. RACES job is to pass traffic by any meansThis isn't limited to amateur or any kind of radioUse the phone, fax email or bicycleThis requires planning and preparationWe need to train ourselves and othersWe need to prepare ourselves, our hom197

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Emcomm Radio 101

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1. Emcomm Radio 101 http://www.WA7DEM.org 1 Snohomish County RACES Developed for Snohomish County RACES Find the latest version at http://www.wa7dem.org Modify as desired but please keep this notice and watch the web site for updates Send any comments/corrections to the Snohomish County Radio Officer Developed for Snohomish County RACES Find the latest version at http://www.wa7dem.org Modify as desired but please keep this notice and watch the web site for updates Send any comments/corrections to the Snohomish County Radio Officer

2. 2 Snohomish County RACES Exhibits: 800 MHz trunking HT to demonstrate “beep”Exhibits: 800 MHz trunking HT to demonstrate “beep”

3. RACES job is to pass traffic by any means This isn’t limited to amateur or any kind of radio Use the phone, fax email or bicycle This requires planning and preparation We need to train ourselves and others We need to prepare ourselves, our homes and our families for extended deployments We need to prepare our facilities and assets We need to develop comm and staffing plans Snohomish County RACES 3 Communication is Job #1

4. Snohomish RACES is chartered by and provides communications support for Snohomish DEM. Snohomish RACES can only activate as part of an official activation with a mission number and as a result members are covered under Washington State insurance when on duty. Although the name of the group might more accurately be Snohomish ACS, there is recognition of the Snohomish RACES name both inside and outside the county, making a name change impractical. Additionally, the group meets the criteria for a RACES team as defined in §97.407 and if the need for a RACES team arises, there should be no ambiguity that this team “is certified by a civil defense organization as registered with that organization”. Snohomish County RACES 4 Snohomish RACES Snohomish RACES operates primarily as an ACS team (Auxiliary Communications Service), similar to Seattle ACS, chartered by Snohomish DEM under normal circumstances. If the President's War Emergency Powers are invoked, limiting radio access to RACES stations, Snohomish RACES will operate as a registered RACES communications team and follow all the guidelines in FCC rules §97.407. The Federal RACES rules were developed in the 1950s to support civil defense activities and offered special privileges (extra frequency spectrum, special callsigns, etc.). These special privileges no longer exist but some restrictions are still technically in place (limits on training activities, who RACES can contact, type of message traffic allowed, etc.). As a result, although Snohomish RACES uses the name RACES, it will operate as an ACS (Auxiliary Communications Service) team to meet the requirements and guidelines of its served agency, Snohomish DEM. Snohomish RACES operates primarily as an ACS team (Auxiliary Communications Service), similar to Seattle ACS, chartered by Snohomish DEM under normal circumstances. If the President's War Emergency Powers are invoked, limiting radio access to RACES stations, Snohomish RACES will operate as a registered RACES communications team and follow all the guidelines in FCC rules §97.407.

5. Snohomish ARES In Snohomish County, ARES provides support for hospitals and Red Cross. ARES members have the ability to self-activate which allows them to pre-deploy to specific locations but are not covered under Washington State insurance when active. ESCA RACES A RACES team supporting the Emergency Services Coordinating Agency representing the member cities along the Snohomish/King county border: Brier, Edmonds, Kenmore, Lake Forest Park, Lynnwood, Mill Creek, Mountlake Terrace, Mukilteo, Woodinville and Woodway. Everett ACS Tulalip RACES Snohomish County RACES 5 Other Snohomish County Teams

6. Arlington Darrington Stanwood Granite Falls Lake Stevens Marysville Snohomish Sultan Gold Bar Index Snohomish County RACES 6 Snohomish DEM Member Cities

7. Snohomish County RACES 7 Emergency Support Functions (ESF) Point out Command and ESF positions in the EOCPoint out Command and ESF positions in the EOC

8. Snohomish County RACES 8 NIMS Organizational Chart

9. Observe the chain of command This promotes efficient communication Everyone takes their role seriously There are egos involved Look professional, be professional and you’ll be treated like one Offer suggestions to minimize chaos, don’t add to it Staff will be exhausted, be polite and smile Tackle any extra task that needs doing Even the Assistant Director will take out the trash, make coffee and clean the kitchen Don’t forget Job #1 Snohomish County RACES 9 Chain of Command

10. Operations “Best Practices” http://www.WA7DEM.org 10 Snohomish County RACES

11. Listen to traffic Only critical information goes over the air Others are listening Do not editorialize Stick to facts and exact message text Don’t be afraid to ask for clarification Some explanations may not be given on air Keep chatter off any nets Know what to say BEFORE pressing PTT Mind background noise in DEM10 and EOC There are headphones but operators are working Snohomish County RACES 11 On Air Operations

12. Use plain English Never use jargon (no 10-codes, Q-codes) “Condition Codes” are an exception Speak Clearly – Don’t rush, slur or mumble Avoid contractions Use ITU phonetics when spelling Police/Sheriff/SAR use different alphabet Pronounce numbers individually Minimize extra words Clear, Monitoring, Standing by, etc. are unnecessary Acknowledge all instructions Nothing goes over the air unless cleared by PIO Snohomish County RACES 12 What to Say

13. Agreed upon words to represent the letters of the “roman alphabet”. The boldfaced syllables are emphasized. The pronunciations shown in this table were designed for those who speak any of the international languages. The pronunciations given for “Oscar”, “Papa” and “Victor” may seem awkward to English-speaking people in the US. A Alfa AL FAH B Bravo BRAH VOH C Charlie CHAR LEE D Delta DELL TAH E Echo ECK OH F Foxtrot FOKS TROT G Golf GOLF H Hotel HOH TELL I India IN DEE AH J Juliet JEW LEE ETT K Kilo KEY LOH L Lima LEE MAH M Mike MIKE N November NO VEM BER O Oscar OSS CAH P Papa PAH PAH Q Quebec KEH BECK R Romeo ROW ME OH S Sierra SEE AIR RAH T Tango TANG GO U Uniform YOU NEE FORM V Victor VIK TAH W Whiskey WISS KEY X X-Ray ECKS RAY Y Yankee YANG KEY Z Zulu ZOO LOO Snohomish County RACES 13 ITU Phonetic Alphabet

14. Use Tactical Callsigns on all radios Amateur Radios also require personal callsign at END and every 10 minutes of transmission Hold ID until end of exchange Rarely would a conversation exceed 10 minutes No amateur callsigns on commercial radios Snohomish County RACES 14 Tactical Callsigns

15. Open/Closed Nets Open Nets Free form Low or sporadic traffic Listen before talk protocol Normal operations Closed (Directed) Nets Net Control Station (NCS) Only transmit when approved by net control Types of Nets Tactical Net The front line net during the incident - where the action is Resource Net Used to recruit operators and equipment to support tactical effort Command Net Interagency and managers Snohomish County RACES 15 Radio Nets

16. Emergency Immediate threat to life or property Key Words Mayday, SOS, Break, Help FCC declares an emergency and posts rules Any special conditions and rules to be observed Remember Emergency traffic always has right of way FCC follows Good Samaritan rules and will forgive those that help The FCC also punishes those that are fraudulent 16 Identifying an Emergency

17. Dos Assume the emergency is real Open the frequency Stop your contact Take the emergency call Avoid FCC declared emergency frequencies Don’ts No false emergencies You can lose your license and go to jail for declaring a false emergency You can be held liable if you interfere with emergency traffic You will be required to pay the cost of the search and rescue effort 17 Emergency Traffic

18. Voice MAYDAY, MAYDAY, MAYDAY any station come in please, this is <your call sign* > … Morse Code SOS, SOS, SOS DE <your call sign* > … On a net or repeater Break or Break, Break, Break * Call sign can be a tactical call sign or your name 18 Declaring an Emergency

19. Amateur Radios http://www.WA7DEM.org 19 Snohomish County RACES

20. HT Most versatile – mobile or portable use (you can’t use it if it’s not with you) Easily transportable between vehicles Options available to allow external antenna, power and speaker/mike Low power limits range FM Mobile Higher power maximizes range Installations are clean/uncluttered Multiband units often include removable face to ease installation Only required accessory is an antenna Easily used as base unit by adding power supply/battery and base antenna Multiband/Multimode Mobile/Base Rigs are similar in size to FM mobiles with more versatility Easily used as very capable base unit Include HF for use after upgrading license Include SSB/CW/PSK31 capability for weak signal work even on VHF/UHF More complicated, more expensive, HF not commonly used by RACES Type of Equipment 20 Snohomish County RACES

21. 2m FM , Battery capable Low power 1W for battery conservation 5W preferred Frequency agile, with PL Ten field-programmable memories Headset Minimize noise and keep conversations private Higher gain antenna Extra battery/charger Equipment Recommendations - HT 21 Snohomish County RACES For EmCom, you want a reliable, rugged, and simple to use rig. Operating controls should be intuitive. It should be capable of operating from an external battery, have a low power option to conserve the battery, and be capable of 25 watts or more for reliable simplex. Ham rigs should be “frequency agile” and field-programmable with ten or more memories and be capable of PL subaudible tones. Having a separate UHF radio is useful in crowded urban areas, such as Arlington, because there are several excellent wide area linked repeater systems which use UHF, it gets in and out of buildings better than VHF and is less affected by pager intermod. In a perfect world every ham would have at least “appliance user” knowledge of packet to set up, connect to a BBS, keyboard a formal message and send it. If you have a General license, please develop HF capability and get experience operating at home, portable or mobile on 75, 60 and 40 meters. Next slide>For EmCom, you want a reliable, rugged, and simple to use rig. Operating controls should be intuitive. It should be capable of operating from an external battery, have a low power option to conserve the battery, and be capable of 25 watts or more for reliable simplex. Ham rigs should be “frequency agile” and field-programmable with ten or more memories and be capable of PL subaudible tones. Having a separate UHF radio is useful in crowded urban areas, such as Arlington, because there are several excellent wide area linked repeater systems which use UHF, it gets in and out of buildings better than VHF and is less affected by pager intermod. In a perfect world every ham would have at least “appliance user” knowledge of packet to set up, connect to a BBS, keyboard a formal message and send it. If you have a General license, please develop HF capability and get experience operating at home, portable or mobile on 75, 60 and 40 meters. Next slide>

22. An HT is INADEQUATE for use as a primary rig for emergencies because it: Limits you mostly to nearby repeaters Severely limits your useable simplex range! Average HT simplex range is 2-5 miles Typical stock “rubber duckie” is -6 dB! But EVERYONE still needs one: For “walk & talk” solo assignments As a spare or backup in case your mobile quits! Don’t expect repeaters to “always be there” 22 Snohomish County RACES If you are close to a repeater or within a mile or so on simplex a portable works OK, but when on the fringes everyone struggles to copy you, uses up their batteries making relays for you. When it gets down and dirty, don’t stake your life on an HT or cell phone. You will still need a portable for solo foot assignments and as a spare or loaner, but if you can afford only one radio and are serious about preparing for EmCom, get a mobile. There are some great buys in mobile radios under $175 these days, so cost is not an excuse. If you are close to a repeater or within a mile or so on simplex a portable works OK, but when on the fringes everyone struggles to copy you, uses up their batteries making relays for you. When it gets down and dirty, don’t stake your life on an HT or cell phone. You will still need a portable for solo foot assignments and as a spare or loaner, but if you can afford only one radio and are serious about preparing for EmCom, get a mobile. There are some great buys in mobile radios under $175 these days, so cost is not an excuse.

23. Antenna The most important option HT antennas are universally bad (single band HTs have best antennas) Where do you want to mount on vehicle? Magnetic mounts are great portable mounts but can (will) scratch over long period Extra batteries Battery cases that take AAs are handy but may operate at reduced power DC power cord Provides power while operating and will charge batteries Speaker/Mike or headset Allows radio to stay on belt or in car Programming software/cable Simplifies entering and maintaining large numbers of memories Snohomish County RACES 23 Handheld Users Supplement your equipment! The best money a HT user can spend is for a STURDY half-wave single or dual-band antenna which works without a ground plane. For fixed station use the copper J-pole is effective and cheap. For mobile use there are many dual-band antennas which are half-wave on 2 meters and collinear on UHF which work without a ground plane. For foot mobile use I carry a Larsen telescoping whip in my kit. It can be pulled up into a tree, as can also a flexible J-pole made from 300-ohm twin-lead or ladder line. No ground plane antennas are needed on non-metal boats, buses, vans, truck caps, ambulances, motorcycles, and bicycles. Lakeview, Larsen, Antenna Specialists and Antennex are all potential sources. A “tiger tail” or ¼ wave wire counterpoise attached with a clip lead to the chassis connector shield of your HT also helps and is directional when used to point the main lobe of your signal where you need it the most. Next slide>> The best money a HT user can spend is for a STURDY half-wave single or dual-band antenna which works without a ground plane. For fixed station use the copper J-pole is effective and cheap. For mobile use there are many dual-band antennas which are half-wave on 2 meters and collinear on UHF which work without a ground plane. For foot mobile use I carry a Larsen telescoping whip in my kit. It can be pulled up into a tree, as can also a flexible J-pole made from 300-ohm twin-lead or ladder line. No ground plane antennas are needed on non-metal boats, buses, vans, truck caps, ambulances, motorcycles, and bicycles. Lakeview, Larsen, Antenna Specialists and Antennex are all potential sources. A “tiger tail” or ¼ wave wire counterpoise attached with a clip lead to the chassis connector shield of your HT also helps and is directional when used to point the main lobe of your signal where you need it the most. Next slide>>

24. Dual-band or Multi-band recommended 2m and 70cm are critical bands RACES has designated frequencies on 6m, 2m, 220 and 70cm Mobile / Portable / Base Capable 25 watts minimum for reliable simplex Good base/mobile antenna You need to be able operate 24 hours without primary power Equipment Recommendations – Mobile/Base 24 Snohomish County RACES For EmComm, you want a reliable, rugged, and simple to use rig. Operating controls should be intuitive. It should be capable of operating from an external battery, have a low power option to conserve the battery, and be capable of 25 watts or more for reliable simplex. Ham rigs should be “frequency agile” and field-programmable with ten or more memories and be capable of PL subaudible tones. Having a separate UHF radio is useful in crowded urban areas, such as Arlington, because there are several excellent wide area linked repeater systems which use UHF, it gets in and out of buildings better than VHF and is less affected by pager intermod. In a perfect world every ham would have at least “appliance user” knowledge of packet to set up, connect to a BBS, keyboard a formal message and send it. If you have a General license, please develop HF capability and get experience operating at home, portable or mobile on 75, 60 and 40 meters. Next slide>For EmComm, you want a reliable, rugged, and simple to use rig. Operating controls should be intuitive. It should be capable of operating from an external battery, have a low power option to conserve the battery, and be capable of 25 watts or more for reliable simplex. Ham rigs should be “frequency agile” and field-programmable with ten or more memories and be capable of PL subaudible tones. Having a separate UHF radio is useful in crowded urban areas, such as Arlington, because there are several excellent wide area linked repeater systems which use UHF, it gets in and out of buildings better than VHF and is less affected by pager intermod. In a perfect world every ham would have at least “appliance user” knowledge of packet to set up, connect to a BBS, keyboard a formal message and send it. If you have a General license, please develop HF capability and get experience operating at home, portable or mobile on 75, 60 and 40 meters. Next slide>

25. Snohomish RACES uses: Yaesu FT-897 on HF Yaesu FT-8800/8900 for VHF/UHF FM Alinco DR-235T for 222MHz FM Icom IC-2820H for FM and DSTAR (DV) Icom ID-1 for DSTAR high speed data (DD) Snohomish County RACES 25 RACES Amateur Equipment

26. Communication Plan http://www.WA7DEM.org 26 Snohomish County RACES

27. Repeater Frequencies 146.920- 123.0Hz Granite Falls Resource Net 224.380- 103.5Hz Marysville (FT) Command Net 442.975+ 103.5Hz Clearview Tactical Net 444.200+ 103.5Hz Marysville (FT) Alternate 70cm 146.780- 103.5Hz Lynnwood Alternate 2m 440.325+ NR7SS Mt Pilchuck DSTAR DV Mode Simplex Frequencies and Tones 52.450     PL 100.0Hz 144.46     PL 123.0Hz 446.500   PL 103.5Hz 224.640 Snohomish RACES VHF-UHF Frequencies 27 Snohomish County RACES

28. HF Frequencies 75 meters: 3.985 LSB (± 3 KHz based on band usage / QRM). 60 meters: 5371.5 USB (± 0 KHz, 50 watts max ERP) 40 meters: 7.245 LSB (± 3 KHz based on band usage / QRM).  FM Simplex frequencies 6m Primary 52.310 Alternate 52.330 2m Primary 146.460 Alternate 146.480 125cm Primary 223.420 Alternate 223.440 70cm Primary 445.825 Alternate 445.800. WA State Frequencies 28 Snohomish County RACES

29. Check that you and your family are safe and secure before you respond as a volunteer Check that your property is safe and secure before you respond as a volunteer Monitor the 146.92 repeater, watch email Follow the instructions you receive from the RACES staff on the above frequency Contact your local Radio Officer, or his/her designee, for further instructions Snohomish County RACES 29 In case of emergency

30. Snohomish RACES must wait for activation by DEM with a Washington State mission number then - The DEM duty officer contacts the RACES radio officer of the activation The radio officer sends an activation notification using the MyStateUSA system, as appropriate Members are instructed to check-in to a resource net on the RACES 146.92 repeater with their availability for deployment The first members on the 146.92 repeater will establish net control and accept check-ins from members The radio officer determines the staffing needs from the DEM duty officer (or requesting party) The radio officer will check with net control to finalize staffing arrangements Snohomish County RACES 30 RACES Activation Process The radio officer will also provide backup points of contact if not available. It is also possible for the duty officer to send a notification to the RACES team in MyStateUSA directly. The issue will be how the RACES team will contact DEM. The 800 VHF systems are not widely available to team members. They could be asked to phone in. When requested by search and rescue, there was a system where SNOPAC would contact the radio officer directly first, then notify the DEM duty officer to save some time. This only happens occasionally and the step notifying the DEM duty officer can be missed. The radio officer will also provide backup points of contact if not available. It is also possible for the duty officer to send a notification to the RACES team in MyStateUSA directly. The issue will be how the RACES team will contact DEM. The 800 VHF systems are not widely available to team members. They could be asked to phone in. When requested by search and rescue, there was a system where SNOPAC would contact the radio officer directly first, then notify the DEM duty officer to save some time. This only happens occasionally and the step notifying the DEM duty officer can be missed.

31. Activation notice goes to RACES members via MyStateUSA First members available check-in on 146.92 repeater with availability and establish resource net Radio room unlocked and radios powered up by first to arrive A call will be made on EOC Hail, the DEM VHF system that the EOC has been activated and to stand by for roll call The computer will be powered up and logged into WebEOC A call will be made on the RACES 146.92 repeater that the EOC is active and the repeater is in condition yellow, giving priority to RACES traffic A general call will go out over EOC Hail and DEM VHF requesting any active EOCs check-in All check-ins will be recorded in WebEOC A call will be made to State EMD on CEMNET notifying them of the activation Any member cities and ESFs that don’t check in will be called specifically by radio and phone until reached An ICS-205 communications plan is created A staffing plan is created Snohomish County RACES 31 RACES Response - EOC

32. Activation notice goes to RACES members via MyStateUSA First members available check-in on 146.92 repeater with availability and establish resource net DEM-10 prepped for travel (unlocked, powered up, started, visual inspection, front radios configured, disconnected from shore power and cables stowed) The computer will be powered up and navigation software started A call will be made to SNOPAC or requesting agency notifying them DEM-10 is enroute and requesting any additional instructions Once DEM-10 arrives on scene, rear operator positions are setup SNOPAC and/or requesting agency are notified DEM-10 is operational Any additional equipment is deployed (antennas, awning, generator, lights, etc.) Mission number is recorded on whiteboard with GPS location A staffing plan is created and recorded on whiteboard with help from net control Snohomish County RACES 32 RACES Response – DEM10

33. Other Radios http://www.WA7DEM.org 33 Snohomish County RACES

34. FRS is unlicensed service with limited range Only units with <500mW and fixed antenna are FCC type accepted FRS shares some channels with GMRS Most radios have all 14 channels There is a cache of FRS radios in DEM-10 Snohomish County RACES 34 FAMILY RADIO SERVICE

35. Snohomish RACES Uses Vertex FT-5500 Up/Down arrow selects frequency “bank” Bank name displayed momentarily when changed DEM, SAR, etc Right (detented) knob selects channel within bank Left knob sets volume Left button ‘MON’ allows monitoring Listen to weak signals or check volume Other radios used for specific services Commercial VHF/UHF 35 Snohomish County RACES

36. Similar to cellular service but with more power and larger “cells” Trunked radios use “talk groups” not channels Controller determines actual frequency Wait for beeps after PTT Allow time for controller to communicate with radio Also organized into “banks” of talk groups DEM 10 has two portables as well as mobile radio The mobile can be used from the drivers or passengers position and also has a second control head for use from the rear operators position These units have the same talk groups as other radios at DEM Handheld radios cost about $2500 so be kind and keep track of them 800 MHz Trunking Radios 36 Snohomish County RACES

37. Operation After pressing PTT there will be a double beep which tells you the system has issued you a frequency. Then talk. When finished talking, release the push to talk button to receive transmissions from other stations. Hold the radio in a vertical position to ensure the best signal to the node site.  Troubleshooting If you hear a low pitched tone when you push to talk, it means, either you are in a bad spot or the system is busy at the moment. Typically a system busy will not last for more than 1 second. You will receive a beep when the system is clear and you can then continue your transmission. If the BONK tone continues to happen, you are in a null area and need to move the location of the antenna. This is similar to what you would experience with a cell phone. Sometimes you may only need to move a few inches. This can happen inside a building or on the edge of the coverage area. Using Trunking Radios 37 Snohomish County RACES

38. Everything in plain English per ICS No 10-codes/Q-codes Other station callsign first, followed by your own Sheriff/SAR uses reversed order Talk across the mike, not into it Amateur Radios Use Tactical Callsigns DEM10, Snohomish EOC, Portable 1, Command, EXEC 1 Sign off with personal call or WA7DEM (RACES) Government Radios (VHF/UHF/Trunking) Use Tactical Callsigns Like above but no amateur call – ever Remember others are listening Radio Protocol 38 Snohomish County RACES

39. Practice these skills on the air Take some turns as net control Program all the RACES frequencies into your radio Know how to program any frequency into your radio Keep your contact info current in MyStateUSA Participate during activations Snohomish County RACES 39 Minimum Expectations

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