I know there are some ‘ham radio’ operators among the readership of this blog. And, most will be participating in the Amateur Radio annual “Field Day” events taking place throughout the U.S. this weekend. In fact, thousands of Amateur Radio operators are showing off their wireless capabilities (often during emergencies) at locations in community parks, campgrounds, schools and emergency centers all over the nation. The events gives the public a chance to meet and talk with the hams and learn more about Amateur Radio. Field Day is sponsored by the American Relay Radio League.
To find out where operators are set up in your area, go to www.ARRL.org/fieldday.
A Ham Radio “Field Day” event in Stuart, Florida
Using only emergency power, ham operators are constructing temporary stations around the country for the weekend and send messages in many forms without the use of phone systems, internet or other infrastructure that can be compromised in a crisis. More than 35,000 amateur radio operators across the country participated in last year’s event. There are more than 660,000 Amateur Radio operators in the US, and 2.5 million around the world. And it is growing. According to the Relay League, in just the past 4 years over 100,000 new people earned their first Amateur Radio Service license from the FCC.
Hams provide critical communications in emergencies world-wide and often are the first to provide information and observations to responders in crisis situations. FEMA, DHS, the National Weather Service, and emergency management offices have the Amateur Radio Emergency Services operators in their emergency communications plans. To learn more about Amateur Radio, go to www.WeDoThat-Radio.org. (If any hams would like to report on their Field Day, please send me an email.)