ARES FR Manual

User Manual:

Open the PDF directly: View PDF PDF.
Page Count: 90

Page 1
The national association for
Newington, CT 06111-1494
A Quick Trainer and Field Resource Guide for the
Emergency Communicator
Copyright © 2005-2008
ISBN10: 0-87259-5439
ISBN13: 978-0-87259-5439
Page 2
This manual is intended to serve as a quick trainer and reference for amateurs deployed in the field for
emergency services work, primarily through the ARRL Amateur Radio Emergency Service (ARES). It provides
basic program information, forms and operating aids. A number of templates can be customized for the
local area to include reference information such as important phone numbers, emergency frequencies, maps,
organizational details and so forth.
ARRL Membership and Volunteer Programs Department
Newington, Connecticut
June 2008
ARES® and Amateur Radio Emergency Service® are registered servicemarks of the
American Radio Relay League, Incorporated.
Page 3
Table of Contents
Topic Page
First Things First 5
Equipment and Personal Checklists 9
Basic Emergency Program Information 13
Amateur Radio Emergency Service 14
National Traffic System (NTS) 16
Radio Amateur Civil 19
Emergency Service (RACES)
Incident Command System (ICS) 21
Information form for Media & Reporter
s 23
Hazardous Material Incident 26
Basic Operating Principles 29
Message Formats 33
Local Net/Contact Information 43
Section ARES Map 52
Topic Page
Section Emergency Plan 53
Operating Aids 57
Hurricane Information 65
Appendices 68
1) FCC Rules 69
2) Third Party Traffic Countries List 73
3) Common Power Connectors 76
4) Mutual Assistance Team 78
(ARESMAT) Concept
5) Understanding our MOUs 81
6) Wilderness Protocol 85
ARES Registration Form 86
Incident Report Form 87
Incident Log Sheets 88
Page 4
Page 5
Topic Page
What to Do First in Case of an Emergency 6
Initial Action Checklist 7
First Things First
Page 6
What to Do First in Case of an Emergency
1) Check that you and your family are safe and secure before you respond as an ARES volunteer.
2) Check that your property is safe and secure before you respond as an ARES volunteer.
3) Monitor ___________________________________ (put your assigned local ARES emergency net
frequency here).
4) Follow the instructions you receive from the ARES officials in charge on the above frequency.
5) Contact your local Emergency Coordinator, or his/her designee, for further instructions.
Page 7
Initial Action Checklist
The net control station and/or ARES officials on the designated emergency net will provide additional
instructions, including information on frequencies used for other resource and tactical nets. Normally, a resource
net will enroll volunteers and provide information on how you can assist.
Be prepared to operate. Check all equipment and connections.
Check in with your assigned contact. Deploy to assignment with “Ready” kit.
Obtain tactical call sign for your location/assignment.
Initiate personal event log (use form at end of this booklet).
Enter assigned frequency(s) on log sheet and on emergency/frequency plan.
Use log form to record messages handled.
Use a formal message form when a precise record is required.
Use tactical call sign for your location, and observe FCC’s 10-minute ID rule.
Monitor your assigned frequency at all times. Notify NCS if you have to leave.
Page 8
Page 9
Topic Page
Basic Deployment Equipment Checklist 10
Extended Deployment (72 Hour) Equipment Checklist 11
About Your “Ready Kit” 12
Equipment and Personal Checklists
Page 10
Basic Deployment Equipment Checklist
When responding to an emergency event, or even a training exercise, there is a minimum set of equipment
and personal gear you should bring with you to get the job done. Basic items include:
2-meter hand-held
2-meter mag-mount antenna and coax
Paper and pencil
ARES ID card
Extra batteries
Appropriate clothing
Food and water
The majority of these items should be kept in a “Ready Kit.” Just pick it up on your way out the door for
deployment. You might also consider the items on the following list for inclusion in this ready kit, designed to
allow you to stay in the field for up to 72 hours.
Page 11
Extended Deployment (72 hour)
Equipment Checklist
3 day change of clothes
Foul weather gear
Toilet articles
Shelter (tent and sleeping bag)
Portable stove;
mess kit with cleaning kit
Waterproof matches
Alarm clock
3 day supply of water and food
Liquid refreshments
First aid kit
Throat lozenges
Aspirin or other pain reliever
Additional radios, packet gear
Power supplies, chargers
Patch cords
Antennas with mounts
SWR bridge (VHF and HF)
Extra coax
RF connectors and adapters
Power, audio and other
connectors and adapters
Soldering iron and solder
Electrical and duct tape
Safety glasses
Log books
Message forms
Page 12
About Your “Ready Kit”
Power—Your 72-hour kit should have several sources of power in it, with extra battery packs and an alkaline
battery pack for your handheld. For mobile VHF and UHF radios, larger batteries are needed. Gel-cell or deep-
cycle marine batteries are good sources of battery power, and you must keep them charged and ready go. It is also
wise to have alternate means available to charge your batteries during the emergency. You can charge smaller
batteries from other larger batteries. You can build a solar charging device. If you’re lucky, you may have access
to a power generator that can be used in place of the normal electrical lines. Have more battery capacity than you
think you might need. Have several methods available to connect your radios different power sources.
Gain Antennas—You can expect to need some kind of gain antenna for your handheld, as well as an
additional gain antenna that can be used on either your handheld or your mobile rig. The extra antenna might be
needed by someone else, or your first antenna might break. For VHF and UHF, you can build a J-pole from TV
twinlead for an inexpensive and very compact antenna. Have several lengths of coax in your kit, totaling at least
50 feet, and barrel connectors to connect them together.
Personal—Include staples: water, or a reliable water filtration and purification system; enough food for three
days; eating utensils, a drinking cup and, if needed, a means of cooking your food. Shelter is also important.
Here, you are only limited by the size of your kit and the thickness of your wallet. Some hams plan to use their
RVs as shelter, conditions permitting. Other disaster conditions may make the use of an RV impossible, so you
should have several different plans for shelter. Light is important psychologically during an emergency. Make
sure that you have several light sources available. Various battery-powered lights are available, and lanterns that
use propane or other fuel are also good possibilities.
Page 13
Topic Page
Amateur Radio Emergency Service (ARES) 14
National Traffic System (NTS) 16
Types of Emergency Nets 18
Radio Amateur Civil Emergency Service (RACES) 19
Incident Command System (ICS) 21
National Incident Management System (NIMS) 22
When the News Media Arrives.... 22
ARRL Amateur Radio Emergency Communications Courses 23
Basic Emergency Program
Page 14
Amateur Radio Emergency Service (ARES)
The ARRL Amateur Radio Emergency Service (ARES) consists of licensed amateurs who have voluntarily
registered their qualifications and equipment for communications duty in the public interest when disaster
strikes. Membership in ARRL or any other local or national organization is not required to join ARES or
participate in ARES activities. ARRL membership is, however, required for the leadership appointments
described here. Because ARES is an Amateur Radio service, only licensed amateurs are eligible for
ARES Organization
There are three levels of ARES organization—section, district and local. At the section level, the Section
Emergency Coordinator (SEC) is appointed by the Section Manager (SM) and works under his supervision.
(The SM is elected by the ARRL members in the section.) In most sections, the SM delegates to the SEC the
administration of the section emergency plan and the authority to appoint District Emergency Coordinators
(DECs), Assistant District Emergency Coordinators and local Emergency Coordinators (ECs) to help him run
the ARES program in the section. An Assistant Section Emergency Coordinator may be appointed by either the
SM or SEC.
Most of the ARES organization and operation gets accomplished at the local level. The local level is where
most emergencies occur and where ARES leaders make direct contact with the ARES member-volunteers
and with officials of the agencies to be served. The local EC is therefore the key contact in ARES. The EC is
Page 15
appointed by the SEC, usually on the recommendation of the DEC (if there is one). Depending on how the SEC
has set up the section for administrative purposes, the EC may have jurisdiction over a small community or a
large city, an entire county or even a group of counties. Whatever jurisdiction is assigned, the EC is in charge of
all ARES activities in his area, not just one interest group, one agency, one club or one band.
In large sections, the SEC has the option of grouping EC jurisdictions into “districts” and appointing
a District EC to coordinate the activities of the local ECs. In some cases, the districts may conform to the
boundaries of governmental planning or emergency operations districts, while in others they are simply based
on repeater coverage or geographical boundaries.
Special-interest groups are headed up by assistant emergency coordinators (AECs). Assistant ECs are
designated by the EC to supervise activities of groups operating in certain bands, especially those groups that
play an important role at the local level, but they may be designated in any manner the EC deems appropriate.
These assistants, with the EC as chairman, constitute the local ARES “planning committee” and they meet
together to discuss problems and plan projects to keep the ARES group active and well trained.
There are any number of different situations and circumstances that might confront an EC, and his ARES
unit should be organized in anticipation of them. There is no specific point at which organization ceases and
operation commences. Both phases must be concurrent because a living organization is a changing one, and the
operations must change with the organization.
Page 16
National Traffic System (NTS)
The National Traffic System (NTS) is designed to meet two principal objectives: 1) rapid movement of traffic
from origin to destination, and 2) training amateur operators to handle written traffic and participate in directed
nets. NTS operates daily and consists of four different net levels—Area, Region, Section, and Local. The four
levels operate in an orderly time sequence to make a definite flow pattern for traffic from origin to destination.
Local Nets
Local nets are those covering small areas such as a community, city, county or metropolitan area, not a
complete ARRL section. They usually operate at VHF (typically 2-meter FM) at times and on days most
convenient to their members. Some are designated as emergency (ARES) nets that do not specialize in traffic
handling. Local nets are intended mainly for local delivery of traffic. Some NTS local nets operate on a daily
basis, just as do other nets of the system, to provide outlets for locally originated traffic. They also route
the incoming traffic as closely as possible to its actual destination before delivery—a matter of practice in
a procedure that might be required in an emergency. Most local nets and even some section nets in smaller
sections are using repeaters to excellent effect. Average coverage on VHF can be extended tenfold or more
using a strategically located repeater, and this can achieve a local coverage area wide enough to encompass
many of the smaller sections.
Section Nets
Coverage of the section may be accomplished by individual stations reporting in, by representatives of
Page 17
NTS local nets, or both. The section may have more than one net (a CW net, a VHF net and an SSB net,
for example). Section nets are administered by an appointed Section Traffic Manager (STM) or designated
Net Managers (NMs). The purpose of the section net is to handle traffic within the section and distribute
traffic coming to the section from higher NTS levels. The section net also puts traffic bound for destinations
outside the section in the hands of the person who is designated to report into the next-higher NTS level (the
region level). A high level of participation by amateurs within the section is desirable to carry out all of these
Operation During Disasters
When a disaster situation arises, NTS is capable of expanding its cyclic operation into complete or partial
operation as needed. ECs in disaster areas determine the communications needs and make decisions regarding
the disposition of local communications facilities, in coordination with agencies to be served. The SEC, after
conferring with the affected DECs and ECs, makes his recommendations to the Section Traffic Manager and/or
NTS net managers at section and/or region levels. The decision and resulting action to alert the NTS region
management may be performed by any combination of these officials, depending upon the urgency of the
situation. While the EC is, in effect, the manager of ARES nets operating at local levels, and therefore makes
decisions regarding their activation, managers of NTS nets at local, section, region and area levels are directly
responsible for activation of their nets in a disaster situation. They activate their nets at the behest of and on the
recommendation of ARES or NTS officials at lower levels.
Page 18
Types of Emergency Nets
Tactical NetThe Tactical Net is the front line net employed during an incident, usually used by a single
government agency to coordinate with Amateur Radio operations within their jurisdiction. There may be several
tactical nets in operation for a single incident depending on the volume of traffic and number of agencies
involved. Communications include traffic handling and resource recruiting.
Resource NetFor larger-scale incidents, a Resource Net is used to recruit operators and equipment in
support of operations on the Tactical Nets. As an incident requires more operators or equipment, the Resource
Net evolves as a check-in place for volunteers to register and receive assignments.
Command NetAs the size of an incident increases and more jurisdictions become involved in the
incident, a Command Net may become necessary. This net allows the incident managers to communicate with
each other to resolve inter- or intra-agency problems, particularly between cities or within larger jurisdictional
areas. It is conceivable that this net could become cluttered with a high volume of traffic. It may also be
necessary to create multiple command nets to promote efficiency.
Open and Closed NetsA net may operate as an open or “free form” net, or as a closed net where a net
control station (NCS) is used to control the flow of transmissions on the channel. Typically, when the amount of
traffic is low or sporadic, a net control isn’t required and an open net is used. Stations merely listen before they
transmit. When a net is declared a “closed” net, then all transmissions must be directed by the NCS.
Page 19
Radio Amateur Civil Emergency Service (RACES)
RACES is a part of the Amateur Radio Service that provides radio communications for civil-preparedness
purposes only, during periods of local, regional or national civil emergencies. These emergencies are not limited
to war-related activities, but can include natural disasters such as fires, floods and earthquakes. RACES is
administered by local/county/state emergency management agencies.
Operating Procedure
Amateurs operating in a local RACES organization must be officially enrolled in the local civil preparedness
group. RACES operation is conducted by amateurs using their own primary station licenses and by existing
RACES stations. The FCC no longer issues new RACES (WC prefix) station call signs. Operator privileges in
RACES are dependent upon, and identical to, those for the class of license held in the Amateur Radio Service.
All of the authorized frequencies and emissions allocated to the Amateur Radio Service are also available to
RACES on a shared basis.
Although RACES was originally based on potential use for wartime, it has evolved over the years. This is
also true of the meaning of civil defense (which is also called civil preparedness or emergency management),
which now encompasses all types of emergencies.
Page 20
While operating in a RACES capacity, RACES stations and amateurs registered in the local RACES
organization may not communicate with amateurs not operating in a RACES capacity. (Of course, such
restrictions do not apply when RACES stations are operating in a non-RACES—such as ARES—amateur
capacity.) Only civil preparedness/emergency management communications can be transmitted (as defined
in the FCC Rules). Test and drills are permitted only for a maximum of one hour per week. All test and drill
messages must be clearly identified as such.
Although RACES and ARES are separate entities, the ARRL advocates dual membership and cooperative
efforts between both groups whenever possible. An ARES group whose members are all enrolled in and
certified by RACES may operate in an emergency with great flexibility. Using the same operators and the
same frequencies, an ARES group also enrolled as RACES can “switch hats” from ARES to RACES and
RACES to ARES to meet the requirements of the situation as it develops. For example, during a “nondeclared
emergency,” ARES can operate under ARES, but when an emergency or disaster is officially declared by
government emergency management authority, the operation can become RACES with no change in personnel
or frequencies.
Page 21
Incident Command System (ICS)
The Incident Command System (ICS) is a management tool that is being adopted by professional emergency
responders throughout the country. ICS provides a coordinated system of command, communications,
organization and accountability in managing emergency events. Amateur Radio operators should be familiar
with the system, as well as how they will interface with agencies employing ICS.
Integral to the ICS is the concept of Unified Command. There is only one boss, the Incident Commander,
who is responsible for the overall operation. For any incident, a number of functions must be performed,
ranging from planning and logistics to handling the press. The functional requirements of planning, logistics,
operations and finance are always present despite the size of the incident. They may be handled by a single
individual for a small incident or a “Command Staff” in a large incident. Another characteristic of ICS is “span
of control.” In simple terms, any manager should only directly manage a small number of people. ICS uses
the number of five for organizational purposes. The number five isn’t hard and fast, but it provides a useful
organizational guideline.
How does the Amateur Radio volunteer fit into the Incident Command System? We are expected to be
communicators, and within the ICS, this would place us in the Logistics Section in the Service Branch as part of
the Communications Unit. The Communications Unit provides all communications services for the operation.
Training courses, IS-100 and IS-200 are available as part of the FEMA Independent Study Program at training.
Page 22
National Incident Management System (NIMS)
The National Incident Management System (NIMS) has been developed to help emergency managers and
responders from different jurisdictions work together more effectively during emergencies and disasters. The
NIMS provides a set of standardized organizational structures, such as the Incident Command System, and
standardized processes and procedures. More information about NIMS is available from the FEMA Web site.
See “IS-700—National Incident Management System (NIMS), An Introduction” found at
When the News Media Arrives…
It is likely that during an incident you will have news reporters showing up at the scene. If you are not a
Public Information Officer (PIO), the easiest way to provide them with the basic information they need is to fill
out the report form on page 89, tear it out and hand it to them. Ideally, there will be an ARES PIO available, but
if not, this form will aid in documenting your service.
Page 23
Fill out this form and give it to Media & Reporters. Refer them to your PIO for more info.
The _____________________ Amateur Radio Emergency Service (ARES®) has been activated to assist
with primary/auxilliary emergency communications for this event. The group is coordinated by
_________________________ (name of EC).
_______________ ARES is working with the ______________ county/city/town Office of Emergency
Management and the following agency(ies):
The group is providing communications links between:
Amateur Radio operators are stationed at the following locations to provide communications assistance:
_____________(#) of Amateur Radio operators are at the sites
_____________(#) of additional Amateur Radio operators are on standby for
additional communications needs.
For more information contact
________________________ (name of PIO or ARES leader)
________________________ (e-mail)
________________________ (phone and pager numbers)
__________________________________________ (current locastion if known)
Page 24
Page 25
Topic Page
HAZMAT Incidents 26
HAZMAT Incident Guidelines 28
Hazardous Material Incident
Page 26
HAZMAT Incidents
The term “hazardous materials” (HAZMAT) refers to any substances or materials which, if released in an
uncontrolled manner (spilled, for example), can be harmful to people, animals, crops, water systems or other
elements of the environment. The list is long and includes explosives, gases, flammable and combustible liquids,
flammable solids or substances, oxidizing substances, poisonous and infectious substances, radioactive materials
and corrosives.
One of the major problems is to determine what chemicals are where and in what quantities. Various
organizations in the US have established or defined classes or lists of hazardous materials for regulatory
purposes or for the purpose of providing rapid indication of the hazards associated with individual substances.
As the primary regulatory agency concerned with the safe transportation of such materials in interstate
commerce, the US Department of Transportation (DOT) has established definitions of various classes of
hazardous materials, established placarding and marking requirements for containers and packages, and adopted
an international cargo commodity numbering system.
The DOT requires that all freight containers, trucks and rail cars transporting these materials display
placards identifying the hazard class or classes of the materials they are carrying. The placards are diamond-
shaped, 10 inches on a side, color-coded and show an icon or graphic symbol depicting the hazard class. They
are displayed on the ends and sides of transport vehicles. A four-digit identification number may be displayed
on the placard or on an adjacent rectangular orange panel.
Page 27
If you have spent time on the roads you have undoubtedly seen these placards or panels displayed on trucks
and railroad tank cars. You may recognize some of the more common ones, such as 1993, which covers a
multitude of chemicals including road tar, cosmetics, diesel fuel and home heating oil. Or you may have seen
tankers placarded 1203 filling the underground tanks at the local gasoline station.
In addition to the placards, warning labels must be displayed on most packages containing hazardous
materials. The labels are smaller versions of the placards (4 inches on a side). In some cases, more than one
label must be displayed, in which case the labels must be placed next to each other. In addition to labels for each
of the DOT hazard classes, other labels with specific warning messages may be required. Individual containers
also have to be accompanied by shipping papers (if you can safely get close enough!) which contain the proper
shipping name, the four-digit ID number and other important information about the hazards of the material.
Details of the placards and emergency response procedures can be found in the comprehensive DOT
Emergency Response Guidebook, copies of which may be available for review from local civil preparedness
officials or your police, sheriff or fire department. You may also want to consult your Local Emergency
Planning Committee (LEPC) or State Emergency Response Commission (SERC) concerning what role Amateur
Radio might have in your local plan. For more information about hazardous materials in general, contact
FEMA, Technological Hazards Division, 500 C St SW, Washington, DC 20472, tel 202-566-1600, www.usfa/ Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration
(PHMSA), A FEMA Independent study course on this subject can be found at
Page 28
HAZMAT Incident Guidelines
Approach the scene cautiously—from uphill and upwind. If you have binoculars, use them!
Try to identify the material by any one of the following:
The four-digit number on a placard or orange panel
The four-digit number (preceded by the initials “UN/NA”) on a shipping paper or package
The name of the material on the shipping paper, placard or package.
Call for help immediately and let the experts handle the situation. Do not attempt to take any action beyond
your level of training. Know what you are capable of doing.
Page 29
Topic Page
Principles of Repeater Operation 30
Principles of Disaster Communication 31
Basic Operating Principles
Page 30
Principles of Repeater Operation
1. Use minimum power. Otherwise, especially in heavily populated areas, you run the risk of keying more
than one repeater, thus causing unnecessary interference. Low power also conserves batteries.
2. Use simplex, whenever possible. ARRL recommends 146.52 MHz, but it’s a good idea to have at least
one other simplex channel available. Use a gain antenna at fixed locations for simplex operation.
3. Observe the “pause” procedure between exchanges. When it is your turn to transmit, after the
transmitting station stands by, count to two or three before pressing your transmit switch. This gives others with
urgent traffic a chance to check in.
4. Listen much, transmit little. Announce your presence on a repeater when you are certain of being able
to assist in an emergency, and don’t tie it up with idle chatter.
5. Monitor your local ARES net frequency when you are not otherwise busy.
6. Think before you talk. Stick to facts, control your emotions. Remember, during an emergency is the time
when you are most apt to act and speak rashly. Anyone with an inexpensive public service band receiver can
7. Articulate, don’t slur. Speak close to your mike, but talk across it, not into it. Keep your voice down.
In an emergency situation you may get excited and tend to shout. Talk slowly, calmly—this is the mark of an
experienced communicator.
Page 31
Principles of Disaster Communication
1. Keep transmissions to a minimum. In a disaster, crucial stations may be weak. All other stations should
remain silent unless they are called upon. If you’re not sure you should transmit, don’t.
2. Monitor established disaster frequencies. Many ARES localities and some geographical areas have
established disaster frequencies where someone is always (or nearly always) monitoring for possible calls.
3. Avoid spreading rumors. During and after a disaster situation, especially on the phone bands, you may
hear almost anything. Unfortunately, much misinformation is transmitted. Rumors are started by expansion,
deletion, amplification or modification of words, and by exaggeration or interpretation. All addressed
transmissions should be officially authenticated as to their source. These transmissions should be repeated word
for word, if at all, and only when specifically authorized.
4. Authenticate all messages. Every message which purports to be of an official nature should be written
and signed. Whenever possible, amateurs should avoid initiating disaster or emergency traffic themselves. We
do the communicating; the agency officials we serve supply the content of the communications.
5. Strive for efficiency. Whatever happens in an emergency, you will find hysteria and some amateurs who
are activated by the thought that they must be sleepless heroes. Instead of operating your own station full time
at the expense of your health and efficiency, it is much better to serve a shift at one of the best-located and best-
equipped stations, suitable for the work at hand, manned by relief shifts of the best-qualified operators. This
reduces interference and secures well-operated stations.
Page 32
6. Select the mode and band to suit the need. It is a characteristic of all amateurs to believe that their
favorite mode and band is superior to all others. The merits of a particular band or mode in a communications
emergency should be evaluated impartially with a view to the appropriate use of bands and modes. There is, of
course, no alternative to using what happens to be available, but there are ways to optimize available resources.
7. Use all communications channels intelligently. While the prime object of emergency communications
is to save lives and property (anything else is incidental), Amateur Radio is a secondary communications means.
Normal channels are primary and should be used if available. Amateurs should be willing and able to use any
appropriate emergency channels—Amateur Radio or otherwise—in the interest of getting the message through.
8. Don’t “broadcast.Some stations in an emergency situation have a tendency to emulate “broadcast”
techniques. While it is true that the general public may be listening, our transmissions are not and should not be
made for that purpose.
9. NTS and ARES leadership coordination. Within the disaster area itself, the ARES is primarily
responsible for emergency communications support. The first priority of those NTS operators who live in or
near the disaster area is to make their expertise available to their Emergency Coordinator (EC) where and when
needed. For timely and effective response, this means that NTS operators should talk to their ECs before the
time of need so that they will know how to best respond.
Page 33
Topic Page
Disaster Welfare Message Form 34
ARRL Message Form Instructions 35
ARRL Message Precedences 37
ARRL Radiogram Form 38
ARRL Message Handling Instructions 39
ARRL Numbered Radiograms for Possible 40
“Relief Emergency Use”
Message Formats
Page 34
Disaster Welfare Message Form
Number Precedence HX Station of Origin Check Place of Origin Time Filed Date
TO: Message Receipt or Delivery Information
Operator and station: _______________________________
Sent to:___________________________________________
Delivered to: ______________________________________
Telephone number: Date:__________________ Time: _____________________
(Circle not more than two standard texts from list below)
ARL ONE Everyone safe here. Please don’t worry.
ARL TWO Coming home as soon as possible.
ARL THREE Am in _________________ hospital. Receiving excellent care and recovering fine.
ARL FOUR Only slight property damage here. Do not be concerned about disaster reports.
ARL FIVE Am moving to new location. Send no further mail or communications. Will inform you of
new address when relocated.
ARL SIX Will contact you as soon as possible.
ARL SIXTY FOUR Arrived safely at ________________________________________________
Time Date Telephone Signature Name
Page 35
ARRL Message Form Instructions
Every formal radiogram message originated and handled should contain the following four main
components in the order given. The numbers and letters refer to corresponding information on the example
message on the next page.
1. Preamble
The Preamble includes information used to prioritize and track the message and ensure its accuracy.
(A) Number. Assigned by the Station of Origin and never changed. Begin with 1 each month or year.
(B) Precedence. Determines the order in which traffic is passed. Assign each message a Precedence of
R (Routine), W (Welfare), P (Priority) or EMERGENCY. See the guidelines on page 39 of this manual.
(C) Handling Instructions (HX). Optional, used only if a specific need is present. Handling Instructions
are detailed later in this manual.
(D) Station of Origin. The call sign of the station originating (creating) the message.
(E) Check. The number of words or word groups in the text of the message. A word group is any group
of one or more consecutive characters with no interrupting spaces.
(F) Place of Origin. The location (city and state) of the party for whom the message was created, and not
necessarily the location of the Station of Origin.
(G) Time Filed. Optional, used only when the filing time has some importance relative to the Precedence,
Handling Instructions or Text.
(H) Date. The date the message was filed. (If Time Filed is used, date and time must agree.)
Page 36
2. Address
Name, address, city, state, ZIP and telephone number of the intended recipient, as complete as possible.
Note that punctuation is not used in the Address section.
3. Text
The message information, limited to 25 words or less if possible. Normal punctuation characters are not
used in the text. A question mark is sent as QUERY, while DASH is sent for a hyphen. The letter X is used as a period
(but never after the last group of the text) and counts as a word when figuring the Check. The letter R is used in
place of a decimal in mixed figure groups (example: 146R52 for 146.52).
4. Signature
The name of the party for whom the message was originated. May include additional information such as
Amateur Radio call sign, title, address, phone number and so on.
Message Example
1. Preamble 1 R HXG W1AW 8 NEWINGTON CT 1830Z JULY 1
(A) (B) (C) (D) (E) (F) (G) (H)
555 1234
4. Signature DIANA
Page 37
EMERGENCY—Any message having life and death urgency to any person or group of persons, that is
transmitted by Amateur Radio in the absence of regular commercial facilities. This includes official messages of
welfare agencies during emergencies requesting supplies, materials or instructions vital to relief efforts for the
stricken populace in emergency areas. On CW and digital modes, this designation will always be spelled out.
When in doubt, do not use this designation.
PRIORITY—Abbreviated as P on CW and digital modes. This classification is for important messages
having a specific time limit, official messages not covered in the emergency category, press dispatches and
emergency-related traffic not of the utmost urgency.
WELFARE—Abbreviated as W on CW and digital modes. This classification refers to an inquiry about the
health and welfare of an individual in the disaster area, or to an advisory from the disaster area that indicates
all is well. Welfare traffic is handled only after all Emergency and Priority traffic is cleared. The American Red
Cross equivalent to an incoming Welfare message is DWI (Disaster Welfare Inquiry).
ROUTINE— Abbreviated as R on CW and digital modes. Most traffic in normal times will bear this
designation. In disaster situations, traffic labeled Routine should be handled last, or not at all when circuits are
busy with higher-precedence traffic.
Page 38
Page 39
ARRL Message Handling Instructions
Handling instructions (HX) convey special instructions to operators handling and delivering the message.
The instruction is inserted in the message Preamble between the Precedence and the Station of Origin. Its use is
optional with the originating stations, but once inserted it is mandatory with all relaying stations.
HXA (Followed by number.) Collect landline delivery authorized by addressee within _____ miles.
(If no number, authorization is unlimited.)
HXB (Followed by number.) Cancel message if not delivered within ____ hours of filing time;
service originating station.
HXC Report date and time of delivery (TOD) to originating station.
HXD Report to originating station the identity of station from which received, plus date and time.
Report identity of station to which relayed, plus date and time, or if delivered report date, time
and method of delivery.
HXE Delivering station get reply from addressee, originate message back.
HXF (Followed by number.) Hold delivery until _____ (date).
HXG Delivery by mail or landline toll call not required. If toll or other expense involved, cancel
message and service originating station.
Page 40
ARRL Numbered Radiograms for Possible
“Relief Emergency Use”
Numbered radiograms are an efficient way to convey common messages. The letters ARL are inserted in the
Preamble in the Check and in the text before spelled out numbers, which represent texts from this list. Note that
some ARL texts include insertion of information.
ONE Everyone safe here. Please don’t worry.
TWO Coming home as soon as possible.
THREE Am in ____ hospital. Receiving excellent care and recovering fine.
FOUR Only slight property damage here. Do not be concerned about disaster reports.
FIVE Am moving to new location. Send no further mail or communication.
Will inform you of new address when relocated.
SIX Will contact you as soon as possible.
Page 41
SEVEN Please reply by Amateur Radio through the amateur delivering this message.
This is a free public service.
EIGHT Need additional _____ mobile or portable equipment for immediate emergency use.
NINE Additional _____ radio operators needed to assist with emergency at this location.
TEN Please contact ______. Advise to standby and provide further emergency information,
instructions or assistance.
ELEVEN Establish Amateur Radio emergency communications with ______ on _____ MHz.
TWELVE Anxious to hear from you. No word in some time. Please contact me as soon as possible.
THIRTEEN Medical emergency situation exists here.
FOURTEEN Situation here becoming critical. Losses and damage from ____ increasing.
FIFTEEN Please advise your condition and what help is needed.
SIXTEEN Property damage very severe In this area.
SEVENTEEN REACT communications services also available. Establish REACT communication with
______ on channel _____.
Page 42
EIGHTEEN Please contact me as soon as possible at _______.
NINETEEN Request health and welfare report on ______(name, address, phone).
TWENTY Temporarily stranded. Will need some assistance. Please contact me at _____.
TWENTY ONE Search and Rescue assistance is needed by local authorities here. Advise availability.
TWENTY TWO Need accurate information on the extent and type of conditions now existing at your
location. Please furnish this information and reply without delay.
TWENTY THREE Report at once the accessibility and best way to reach your location.
TWENTY FOUR Evacuation of residents from this area urgently needed. Advise plans for help.
TWENTY FIVE Furnish as soon as possible the weather conditions at your location.
TWENTY SIX Help and care for evacuation of sick and injured from this location needed at once.
Page 43
Topic Page
Local Emergency Net Information 44
Local Red Cross Chapter Offices 45
Local/County Emergency Operations Centers 46
Local/County Public Safety Agency Offices 47
Section/District/County ARRL ARES Emergency Coordinators 48
Other Emergency Information Contacts 49
Local Repeater Directory 50
ARRL Section ARES Map 52
Section Emergency Plan 53
Local Digital Directory 54
Local Net/Contact Information
Page 44
Local Emergency Net Information
Day Time Net Name Frequency Sponsor
NTS Section Net
NTS Local Net
Page 45
Local American Red Cross Chapter Offices
Chapter Name Address Telephone E-Mail Station Call Sign
Page 46
Local/County Emergency Operations Centers
EOC Name Address Telephone E-Mail Station Call Sign
Page 47
Local/County Public Safety Agency Offices
Agency/Office Name Address Telephone E-Mail Station Call Sign
State Police
Local Police
Fire Department
Civil Defense/ Emergency
National Weather Service
Page 48
Section/District/County ARRL ARES
Emergency Coordinators
Name and Call Sign Title Address Telephone E-mail
Coordinator (EC)
Assistant EC
Assistant District EC
District EC
Assistant Section EC
Section EC
Section Manager
Net Manager
Page 49
Other Emergency Information Contacts
Name and Call Sign Title Address Telephone E-mail
Page 50
Local Repeater Directory
Location Output Input Call Sign Notes
Emergency Power
Emergency Power
Page 51
Local Repeater Directory (cont.)
Location Output Input Call Sign Notes
Emergency Power
Emergency Power
Page 52
ARRL Section ARES Map
Paste your ARRL Section ARES map here. The map may show the breakdown of your ARRL Section into
districts and local jurisdictions, or other organizational information.
Page 53
Section Emergency Plan
Paste your Section Emergency Operations Plan here.
Page 54
Local Digital Directory
Location Frequency Alias Call Sign Notes
Emergency Power
Emergency Power
Page 55
Local Digital Directory (contd.)
Location Frequency Alias Call Sign Notes
Emergency Power
Emergency Power
Page 56
Page 57
Operating Aid Page
ARRL Communications Procedures 58
ITU Phonetic Alphabet 59
R-S-T System 60
International Q Signals 61
Abbreviations, Prosigns, Prowords 63
Operating Aids
Page 58
ARRL Communications Procedures
Voice CW Function
Go ahead K Used after calling CQ, or at the end of a transmission, to indicate any
station is invited to transmit.
Over AR Used after a call to a specific station, to indicate end of instant
KN Used at the end of any transmission when only the specific station
contacted is invited to answer.
Stand by or wait AS A temporary interruption of the contact.
Roger R Indicates a transmission has been received correctly.
Clear SK End of contact. SK is sent before final identification.
Leaving the air CL Indicates that a station is going off the air, and will not listen for any
further calls. CL is sent after the final identification.
Page 59
ITU Phonetic Alphabet
Word list adopted by the International Telecommunication Union.
Page 60
R-S-T System
2—Barely readable, occasional words distinguishable.
3—Readable with considerable difficulty.
4—Readable with practically no difficulty.
5—Perfectly readable.
Signal Strength
1—Faint signals, barely perceptible.
2—Very weak signals.
3—Weak signals.
4—Fair signals.
5—Fairly good signals.
6—Good signals.
7—Moderately strong signals.
8—Strong signals.
9—Extremely strong signals.
1—Sixty Hz ac or less, very rough and
2—Very rough ac, very harsh and broad.
3—Rough ac tone, rectified but not filtered.
4—Rough note, some trace of filtering.
5—Filtered rectified ac but strongly ripple-
6—Filtered tone, definite trace of ripple
7—Near pure tone, trace of ripple
8—Near perfect tone, slight trace of
9—Perfect tone, no trace of ripple or
modulation of any kind.
Page 61
Signal Message
QRA What is the name of your station?
QRG What’s my exact frequency?
QRH Does my frequency vary?
QRI How is my tone? (1-3)
QRK What is my signal intelligibility?
QRL Are you busy?
QRM Is my transmission being
interfered with?
QRN Are you troubled by static?
QRO Shall I increase transmitter
QRP Shall I decrease transmitter
International Q Signals
Signal Message
QRQ Shall I send faster?
QRS Shall I send slower?
QRT Shall I stop sending?
QRU Have you anything for me?
(Answer in negative)
QRV Are you ready?
QRW Shall I tell ........ you’re calling
QRX When will you call again?
QRZ Who is calling me?
QSA What is my signal strength? (1-5)
QSB Are my signals fading?
QSD Is my keying defective?
Page 62
QSG Shall I send ........ messages at a time?
QSK Can you work breakin?
QSL Can you acknowledge receipt?
QSM Shall I repeat the last message
QSO Can you communicate with
............. direct?
QSP Will you relay to ......... ?
QSV Shall I send a series of V’s?
QSW Will you transmit on ......... ?
QSX Will you listen for ....... on ....... ?
QSY Shall I change frequency?
QSZ Shall I send each word/group
more than once? (Answer
send twice or ..... )
Signal Message
QTA Shall I cancel number ........ ?
QTB Do you agree with my word
count? (Answer negative)
QTC How many messages have you
to send?
QTH What is your location?
QTR What is your time?
QTV Shall I stand guard for you ..... ?
QTX Will you keep your station open
for further communication with
QUA Have you news of ............. ?
Signal Message
Page 63
Abbreviations, Prosigns, Prowords
CW Phone
AA (Separation between parts of address or
AA All after (use to get fills).
AB All before (used to get fills).
ADEE Addressee (name of person to whom message
ADR Address (second part of message).
AR End of message (end of record copy).
ARL (Used with “check “ indicates use of ARRL
numbered message in text).
AS Stand by; wait.
B More (another message to follow).
BK Break; break me; break-in (interrupt
transmission on CW. Quick check on phone).
BT Separation (break) between address and text;
between text and signature.
C Correct; yes.
CFM Confirm. (Check me on this).
CK Check.
DE From; this is (preceding identification).
HH (Error in sending. Transmission continues with
last word correctly sent.)
HX (Handling instructions. Optional part preamble.)
Initial(s). Single letter(s) follow.
IMI Repeat; I say again. (Difficult or unusual words
or groups.)
K Go ahead; over; reply expected. (Invitation to
transmit .)
N Negative; incorrect; no more. (No more
messages to follow.)
NR Number. (Message follows.)
PBL Preamble (first part of message)....... Read back.
(Repeat as received.)
R Roger; point. (Received; decimal point.)
SIG Signed; signature (last part of message.)
SK Out; clear (end of communications reply
TU Thank you.
WA Word after (used to get fills.)
WB Word before (used to get fills.) ......
Speak slower. ...... Speak faster.
Page 64
Page 65
Topic Page
Saffir/Simpson Hurricane Scale 66
Hurricane Tracking Chart 67
Hurricane Information
Page 66
Saffir/Simpson Hurricane Scale
The Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Scale is a 1-5 rating based on a hurricane’s intensity. It is used to give an
estimate of the potential property damage and flooding expected along the coast from a hurricane landfall. For
more information about this scale and hurricanes in general, visit the National Hurricane Center’s Web site at
Category Pressure
(feet) Damage
1 28.94 74-95 4-5 No real damage to buildings. Damage to unanchored mobile homes, shrubs and
trees. Some damage to poorly built signs. Some coastal flooding and minor pier
2 28.50 96-110 6-8 Some damage to building roofs, doors and windows. Considerable damage to
shrubs and trees with some trees blown down. Considerable damage to mobile
homes, poorly built signs and piers. Small craft in unprotected anchorages may
break moorings.
3 27.91 111-130 9-12 Some structural damage to small residences and utility buildings. Large trees
blown down. Mobile homes and poorly built signs destroyed. Flooding near the
coast destroys smaller structures with larger structures damaged by floating debris.
Terrain may be flooded well inland. Evacuation of low areas within several blocks of
shoreline may be required.
4 27.17 131-155 13-18 More extensive curtainwall failures with some complete roof structure failure on
small residences. Shrubs, trees and all signs blown down. Major erosion of beach
areas. Terrain may be flooded well inland. Massive evacuation of low areas up to 6
miles inland may be required.
5 27.16 156+ 18+ Complete failure of roofs on residences and many commercial buildings. Some
complete building failures with small buildings overturned or blown away. All shrubs,
trees and signs blown down. Flooding causes major damage to all structures
near the shoreline. Massive evacuation from low ground within 5-10 miles of the
shoreline may be required.
Page 67
Hurricane Tracking Chart
Page 68
Appendix Topic Page
1 FCC Rules, Subpart E: Providing Emergency Communications 69
2 Third Party Traffic Countries List 73
3 Common Power Connectors 76
4 Mutual Assistance Team (ARESMAT) Concept 78
5 Understanding our MOUs 81
6 Wilderness Protocol 85
ARES Registration Form 86
Incident Report Forms 87
Incident Log Sheets 88
Page 69
Appendix 1
FCC Rules: Subpart E—Providing Emergency Communications
§97.401 Operation during a disaster.
A station in, or within 92.6 km (50 nautical miles) of, Alaska may transmit emissions J3E and R3E
on the channel at 5.1675 MHz (assigned frequency 5.1689 MHz) for emergency communications.
The channel must be shared with stations licensed in the Alaska-Private Fixed Service. The
transmitter power must not exceed 150 W PEP. A station in, or within 92.6 km of, Alaska may transmit
communications for tests and training drills necessary to ensure the establishment, operation, and
maintenance of emergency communication systems.
§97.403 Safety of life and protection of property.
No provision of these rules prevents the use by an amateur station of any means of
radiocommunication at its disposal to provide essential communication needs in connection with the
immediate safety of human life and immediate protection of property when normal communication
systems are not available.
§97.405 Station in distress.
(a) No provision of these rules prevents the use by an amateur station in distress of any means at
its disposal to attract attention, make known its condition and location, and obtain assistance.
(b) No provision of these rules prevents the use by a station, in the exceptional circumstances described
in paragraph (a), of any means of radiocommunications at its disposal to assist a station in distress.
Page 70
§97.407 Radio amateur civil emergency service.
(a) No station may transmit in RACES unless it is an FCC-licensed primary, club, or military recreation
station and it is certied by a civil defense organization as registered with that organization, or it is an
FCC-licensed RACES station. No person may be the control operator of a RACES station, or may be
the control operator of an amateur station transmitting in RACES unless that person holds a FCC-issued
amateur operator license and is certied by a civil defense organization as enrolled in that organization.
(b) The frequency bands and segments and emissions authorized to the control operator are
available to stations transmitting communications in RACES on a shared basis with the amateur
service. In the event of an emergency which necessitates invoking the President’s War Emergency
Powers under the provisions of section 706 of the Communications Act of 1934, as amended, 47
U.S.C. 606, RACES stations and amateur stations participating in RACES may only transmit on the
frequency segments authorized pursuant to part 214 of this chapter.
(c) A RACES station may only communicate with:
(1) Another RACES station;
(2) An amateur station registered with a civil defense organization;
(3) A United States Government station authorized by the responsible agency to communicate
with RACES stations;
(4) A station in a service regulated by the FCC whenever such communication is authorized by the
Page 71
(d) An amateur station registered with a civil defense organization may only communicate with:
(1) A RACES station licensed to the civil defense organization with which the amateur station is
(2) The following stations upon authorization of the responsible civil defense ofcial for the
organization with which the amateur station is registered:
(i) A RACES station licensed to another civil defense organization;
(ii) An amateur station registered with the same or another civil defense organization;
(iii) A United States Government station authorized by the responsible agency to communicate
with RACES stations; and
(iv) A station in a service regulated by the FCC whenever such communication is authorized
by the FCC.
(e) All communications transmitted in RACES must be specically authorized by the civil defense
organization for the area served. Only civil defense communications of the following types may be
(1) Messages concerning impending or actual conditions jeopardizing the public safety,
or affecting the national defense or security during periods of local, regional, or national civil
(2) Messages directly concerning the immediate safety of life of individuals, the immediate
Page 72
protection of property, maintenance of law and order, alleviation of human suffering and need, and the
combating of armed attack or sabotage;
(3) Messages directly concerning the accumulation and dissemination of public information or
instructions to the civilian population essential to the activities of the civil defense organization or
other authorized governmental or relief agencies; and
(4) Communications for RACES training drills and tests necessary to ensure the establishment
and maintenance of orderly and efcient operation of the RACES as ordered by the responsible civil
defense organizations served. Such drills and tests may not exceed a total time of 1 hour per week.
With the approval of the chief ofcer for emergency planning the applicable State, Commonwealth,
District or territory, however, such tests and drills may be conducted for a period not to exceed 72
hours no more than twice in any calendar year.
Page 73
Appendix 2
Countries that Share a Third Party Traffic Agreement with the
United States:
Prefix Country Name
V2 Antigua/Barbuda
LU Argentina
VK Australia
V3 Belize
CP Bolivia
T9 Bosnia-Herzegovina
PY Brazil
VE Canada
CE Chile
HK Colombia
D6 Comoros
TI Costa Rica
CO Cuba
HI Dominican Republic
J7 Dominica
HC Ecuador
YS El Salvador
Prefix Country Name
C5 Gambia, The
9G Ghana
J3 Grenada
TG Guatemala
8R Guyana
HH Haiti
HR Honduras
4X Israel
6Y Jamaica
JY Jordan
EL Liberia
V7 Marshall Islands
XE Mexico
V6 Micronesia,
Federated States of
YN Nicaragua
Prefix Country Name
HP Panama
ZP Paraguay
OA Peru
DU Philippines
VR6 Pitcairn Island*
V4 St. Kitts/Nevis
J6 St. Lucia
J8 St. Vincent and the Grenadines
9L Sierra Leone
ZS South Africa
3DA Swaziland
9Y Trinidad/Tobago
TA Turkey
G United Kingdom
CX Uruguay
YV Venezuela
4U1ITU - ITU, Geneva
4U1VIC - VIC, Vienna
Page 74
*Since 1970, there has been an informal agreement between the United Kingdom and the US, permitting
Pitcairn and US amateurs to exchange messages concerning medical emergencies, urgent need for equipment or
supplies, and private or personal matters of island residents.
US licensed amateurs may operate in the following US territories under their FCC license: The Northern
Marianas Islands, Guam, Johnston Island, Midway Island, Kure Island, American Samoa, Wake Island, Wilkes
Island, Peale Island, The Commonwealth of Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands.
Please note that the Region 2 Division of the International Amateur Radio Union (IARU) has recommended
that international traffic on the 20 and 15-meter bands be conducted on the following frequencies:
14.100-14.150 MHz
14.250-14.350 MHz
21.150-21.200 MHz
21.300-21.450 MHz
The IARU is the alliance of Amateur Radio societies from around the world; Region 2 comprises member-
societies in North, South and Central America, and the Caribbean.
Note: At the end of an exchange of third-party traffic with a station located in a foreign country, an FCC-
licensed amateur must transmit the call sign of the foreign station as well as his own call sign.
Page 75
Temporary Third Party Traffic Agreements
Note: During major disaster situations, administrations of countries may request temporary third-party
traffic agreements to facilitate the passage of emergency and health and welfare messages. W1AW bulletins
carry announcements of temporary agreements.
Page 76
Appendix 3
Common Power Connectors
An increasing number of groups have adopted
the 30-A Anderson PowerPole connector. Not
only can the PowerPole handle greater current, it
is also capable of being plugged and unplugged
many hundreds of times (operations) without
deterioration. These connectors are available from
several QST advertisers including Cable X-Perts
( and PowerWerx
( More information is
available from the Anderson Power Products Web
site at Look for these
part numbers:
30 A Complete Connector Housing Contact Retaining Pin
Black 1330G4 1327G6 1331 110G16
Red 1330 1327 1331 110G16
Page 77
The 12-A Molex 1545 series connector (part numbers: male, 03-09-2022; female, 03-09-1022) is adequate
for low power mobile radios, handhelds and accessories.
It is important to find out which connector is being used in your area. Just to be sure, always check the
voltage and polarity of a power source before you plug your equipment in, since polarity conventions are not
always followed. Fusing the negative leads helps to protect equipment from ground-fault currents.
Page 78
Pre-Departure Functions
Notification of activation/assignment
Credentials issued
General and technical briefing
Review host SEC’s invitation
Expected length of deployment reviewed
Appendix 4
Mutual Assistance Team (ARESMAT) Concept
The ARESMAT concept recognizes that a neighboring section’s ARES resources can be quickly
overwhelmed in a large-scale disaster. ARES members in the affected areas may be preoccupied with mitigation
of their own personal situations and therefore not be able to respond in local ARES operations. Accordingly,
communications support must come from ARES personnel outside the affected areas. This is when help may
be requested from neighboring sections’ ARESMAT teams. The following is a checklist of functions for
ARESMAT leaders.
In-Travel Functions
Review situation status, and sitreps
Review job assignments
Affected area profile
Mission disaster relief plan
Technical documents
Contact lists
Tactical operation procedures
Page 79
Arrival Functions
Check in with host ARES officials
Obtain information:
Frequencies in use
Current actions
Available personnel
Communication and computer equipment
Support facilities
Host’s ARES plan
Establish initial intra-team communication net
Establish HF or VHF channel back to the home
section for morale traffic
In-situ Functions
Initial assessment
Monitor host ARES officials’ communications
Reduce duplication of effort
Proper safety practices
Daily critique of effectiveness
Pre-Demobilization and Demobilization
Extraction procedure negotiated
Demobilization plan in effect
Team critique begun
ARESMAT Member Qualifications
High performance standards
Team player
Strong personal desire
Strong interpersonal communication skills
Emergency management knowledge
Respected by officials and peers
Available with consent of employer
Physically fit
Page 80
ARESMAT Concept Summary
It should be noted that there is a fine balance of authority over a deployed ARESMAT. The in-disaster
SEC (or delegated authority) should be able to make decisions as to use and deployment of an incoming team.
Therefore, an incoming team should be prepared to submit themselves to such authority; this is evidenced by
the fact that any team, internal or external, has only a limited view of the overall operation. The supervising
authorities will naturally have a better overview of the whole situation.
In turn, however, the in-disaster authority should be discouraged from abusing the resources of incoming
teams. Should a team no longer be required, or a situation de-escalate, the team should be released at the earliest
possible time, so that they may return home to their own lives.
The ARESMAT tool should be one of “last resort—better than nothing.” Whenever possible, amateurs from
the affected section should be used for support. It is a lot to ask of a volunteer to travel far from home, family
and job for extended periods of arduous and potentially dangerous work.
Page 81
Appendix 5
Understanding our Memoranda of Understanding
The premier justification for continued access to our piece of the spectrum pie is, and always will be, public
service. A major part of our public service activity is conducted in the context of the ARRLs national-level
formal agreements (MOUs) with “heavy hitters” of the emergency management community.
An MOU provides a framework for cooperation and coordination with agencies to which we as radio
amateurs provide communication services. At the national level, this means periodic headquarters-to-
headquarters contact to exchange news, views, information, and points of contact in the field. The idea is to get
to know one another on a face-to-face basis, so that when an emergency happens you know who to call and who
you can count on.
At the local level, an MOU serves two purposes. First, it’s a door opener. A new ARES group is more
likely to be heard and taken seriously by a local National Weather Service (NWS) office when accompanied
by a copy of the National agreement. The served agency says, in effect, we have examined this organization of
radio amateurs and have found them to be trustworthy and able to render substantial and needed services for our
field operations in times of emergency. The agency head is telling its field offices, “Go get ‘em—they are good
for us.
Secondly, once your foot is in the door, the provisions of the MOU document spell out the capabilities and
organization of the servers (us), the organization and needs of the served agency (them), and the methods of
operation. These are broad guidelines that lead to the establishment of a local memorandum of understanding
or similar document that sets forth the detailed operational plans and policies to be subscribed to by both parties
during drills, and actual events.
Page 82
The most important step here is to ensure that both parties to the local agreement have a realistic assessment
of the resources brought to the table by the servers, and the needs of the served. Please contact your ARRL
section leaders or ARRL Headquarters if you have questions about local or national-level MOUs. More
information and the text of our various MOUs may be found online at
American Red Cross
ARRL and the Red Cross have had cooperative agreements since 1940. The current statement was signed in
2002. Chartered by Congress in 1905, the Red Cross provides relief to victims displaced by disaster, from the
onset of disaster conditions to the recovery phase.
APCO International
The Association of Public-Safety Communications Officials (APCO)—International comprises communica-
tions professionals in emergency medical, law enforcement, fire, search-and-rescue and other public safety fields.
Civil Air Patrol
Members of ARRL and the Civil Air Patrol (CAP) share common goals of serving the public through
efficient and effective use of radio communications. To this end, members of both organizations engage in
regular training to prepare for emergency and disaster communications. Members of both organizations provide
important communications capability to the Homeland Security programs of the United States.
Department of Homeland Security—Citizen Corps
In June 2003, ARRL became an official affiliate program of Citizen Corps, an initiative within the
Department of Homeland Security to enhance public preparedness and safety. ARRL has worked very closely
with FEMA since 1984 when an MOU was inked that helped ARRL volunteers coordinate their services with
Page 83
emergency management at all levels of government. FEMAs job was as a “last responder,” as opposed to first
responders (the local, county and state emergency management agencies). Today, Citizen Corps groups are at
the community level and state level to assist first responders.
National Association of Radio and Telecommunications Engineers
Founded in 1982, the National Association of Radio and Telecommunications Engineers (NARTE) offers an
accredited certification program to qualified engineers and technicians, many of them Amateur Radio operators.
Its other activities include participation as a commercial operator license examination manager. Its primary
mission is to promote professional excellence within the telecommunications industry and related areas.
National Communications System
The National Communications System (NCS) is a unique organization. It is a confederation of 23
organizations across the Federal Government tasked with ensuring the availability of a viable national security
and emergency preparedness telecommunications infrastructure.
National Weather Service
Amateur Radio is almost synonymous with the SKYWARN program, the “eyes and ears” of the National
Weather Service (NWS) during severe weather emergencies. Hams comprise the majority of SKYWARN
volunteers, who report “ground truths” to local NWS offices, supplementing their sophisticated weather
monitoring equipment.
Quarter Century Wireless Association
The Quarter Century Wireless Association (QCWA) and the ARRL recognize each other’s efforts to support,
protect, promote and advance the Amateur Radio Service.
Page 84
REACT International
ARRL and REACT (Radio Emergency Associated Communication Teams) share common goals in terms
of emergency communication. The primary mission of REACT is “to provide public safety communications to
individuals, organizations, and government agencies to save lives, prevent injuries, and give assistance wherever
and whenever needed.
Salvation Army
The Salvation Army has provided services to victims of disasters for decades, and it’s particularly active in
the recovery stage of disasters. Along with many other agencies, the ARRL and the Salvation Army also are
member organizations to the National Voluntary Organizations Active in Disaster (NVOAD).
Society of Broadcast Engineers
ARRL is committed to helping develop future careers in RF Engineering and related technological fields.
Our alliance with the Society of Broadcast Engineers (SBE) will help many hams gain the informational
resources necessary to make sound career choices, as well as strengthen the exchange of technological
innovation between hams and engineering professionals.
United States Power Squadrons
The United States Power Squadrons (USPS), a national boating and educational organization, is dedicated
to making boating safer and more enjoyable. USPS formalized an MOU with ARRL in 2005 linking the two
services in their efforts to better serve the public. USPS is a world leader in speaking out for and promoting the
needs of all recreational boaters.
Page 85
Appendix 6
Wilderness Protocol
The Wilderness protocol (see page 101, August 1995 QST) calls for hams in the wilderness to announce
their presence on, and to monitor, the national calling frequencies for five minutes beginning at the top of the
hour, every three hours from 7 AM to 7 PM while in the back country. A ham in a remote location may be able
to relay emergency information through another wilderness ham who has better access to a repeater. National
calling frequencies: 52.525, 146.52, 223.50, 446.00, 1294.50 MHz.
Page 86
ARES® Registration Form
Name: ______________________________ Call Sign: _______________ License Class ___________
Address: _________________________ City: _______ ____ _____________ State: ____ Zip: ________
Bus. phone: __________________ Home phone: ___________________ Cell: ____________________
E-mail: _________________________________________ Check bands/modes you can operate:
Mode HF 6 meters 2 meters 222 MHz 440 MHz 1.2 GHz
Can your home station be operated without commercial power? Yes _____ No _____
If yes, what bands? ____________________________________________________________
Signature: ___________________________________________________ Date:___________
Contact ARES and ARRL Section Leaders in your area:
Page 87
Incident Report Form
Please fill out this form and send a copy to your Emergency Coordinator and to ARRL
Headquarters. When reporting to ARRL Headquarters, you can use the online reporting form
Nature of emergency/disaster: _________________________________________________________________
Dates of activity: ______________ Places or areas involved: ________________________________
Nets and/or frequencies used: __________________________________________________________________
Number of participating amateurs: ______________ Number of messages handled: __________________
Agencies supported: _________________________________________________________________________
ARES leadership officials managing deployment: __________________________________________________
Your name/call: ___________________________ Signature: _________________ Date: __________
E-Mail address: __________________________
Page 88
Incident Log Sheet
Event Msg
Message To Assigned Net
Assigned By
Page 89
Incident Log Sheet
Event Msg
Message To Assigned Net
Assigned By
Page 90

Navigation menu