Joseph Lawrence, K9RFZ, RACES Radio Officer for Allen County, sent the following information via email July 23. We’ve reprinted it here for any interested operators who might not have seen the email.
To all Allen County RACES & ARES members
This Saturday morning, the IDHS semi-annual RACES drill will occur. For the first time, we will be conducting communications at the state, district, and county level for this drill. Please plan to participate.
District 3 county EOC’s will be conducting a net on the 146.88 repeater from about 9am to noon. The state EOC will be activated to receive county mission tasks via WebEOC (internet based). Allen county will start a net at 8:30am on the 146.94 repeater. If you are an Allen County RACES/ARES member, then you are expected to check-in and be counted. You may decline to accept a deployment assignment if you can’t particpate further. That’s understandable. In an actual incident, many operators may be unavailable to deploy.
If you can participate for the full local drill, then you may be assigned to deploy to one of the five trauma hospitals in the county. I will be seeking at least 10 volunteers who can drive to a designated hospital, make contact with the hospital security dept, be escorted to their EOC radio connection, connect to the SO-239 external antenna connection, and handle voice messages for the drill duration. You will need to provide your own radio and a cable to connect your radio to an SO-239 wall-mounted connector. I have recently checked each of the antenna systems with an HT and they work fine.
The hospital Security staff will give you an envelope with instrucitons for the drill. Follow the instructions at the appointed times.
Important: All messages transmitted during the drill need to be prefaced with “this is a drill message”. I know it’s easy to forget. I’ve messed up before, so let’s all try to make certain at least one of the stations in each contact clearly makes that statement. Let’s help each other remember and don’t take offense if someone backs you up.
The Allen County EOC will be monitoring both the 88 and 94 repeaters. Local net will be on 94, district net will be on 88.
We have been practicing these RACES drills for the past 5 years with progressively more realistic and complex requirements. Allen County has always done well in accomplishing the scenario tasks. I’m asking each of you to step it up and let’s show the IDHS and our district 3 partners that Allen County has a top-notch competent team that can be relied upon to succeed in a disaster.
I will be on the ARES net tonight to answer questions or you may reply to this group posting.
Joseph Lawrence, K9RFZ
Allen County RACES RO