Assistant Emergency Coordinators (AEC's) are meeting to prepare for the Simulated Emergency Test (SET) scheduled for the first weekend in October. ARES members will staff stations and simulated stations for shelters, EOC's, hospitals, and feeding vehicles. Plans are also in the works to work with the MN State EOC as part of the drill. Messages will also be entered into the National Traffic System to other parts of the nation via Amateur Radio.
The July 2013 edition of QST lists the 2012 Simulated Emergency Test Results. Washington County ARES is listed on page 71 under the Dakota Division, MN Section with a score of 240. This is a nice formal recognition of the hard work, time, and dedication of our members in training and preparing for emergency communications. Kudos to every member for your support of ARES and your hard work!
ARES Go Kit Picnic scheduled for June 15th, Kargel Park in Woodbury. Come with your Go Kit or notebook!Submitted by J E Regan on Sun, 06/02/2013 - 19:11.
The MNWASHCOARES Go Kit Picnic is scheduled for Saturday, June 15th, 11:30 AM, at Kargel Park in Woodbury. The address 9301 Tamarack Road ( go east from I-494 on Tamarack road past several stop lights such as Radio Drive, past Interlacken Parkway, and the park will appear on your right. The cross street is Moonlight).
Bring your Go Kit to share information with ARES members, or bring your notebook to get ideas for your next go kit. Either way, let John Regan know you are coming so adequate food will be available (hot dogs, brats, chips, pop and water). Hope to see you there!!
Despite the cold and inhospitable weather, we had a good turnout of Washington County ARES members for construction projects. The largest group finished support bases for antenna masts for an elevated mobile 2m antenna with a base plate held down by a vehicle or a weight. It enables a ham to get an antenna up in the air 15 - 25 feet for better communications. We found a great welder in the group who stepped up and corrected and completed the top plates in Joe (KC0OIO). Several from that group also completed J-pole antennas from ladder line and TV lead in wire.
The Red River at Fargo-Moorhead crested early Wednesday morning at 33.32 feet. The mark is substantially below the earliest prediction of near 39 feet. This points up the critical parts played by melt rate and additional precipitation. Both were favorable to the safety and lack of serious flooding that eventually resulted for the area.
MNWASHCOARES members will build projects this Saturday that enhance personal communications capabilities and increase ARES abilities throughout our area. Projects include aluminum mast supports (capable of holding a 25 foot mast with antenna next to a vehicle), ladder line J-pole, and a sound card interface for digital communications. These projects will enable members to communicate more effectively for our served agencies, especially those over the bluff in the St. Croix River Valley and the Grey Cloud Island area, also below a shadowing bluff.
As of 4:15 pm Tuesday, April 30, the revised crest is 33.3 feet sometime on Wednesday. This downward revision is a significant bright light for these towns. It almost ensures that hams will not be needed this year. Thanks for maintaining Situational Awareness for this area. Flood concerns for Minnesota are diminishing with the melt.
Nice article on the ARRL web site. It talks about the role of ham radio and steps taken by hams after the bombings at the Boston Marathon. Good reading for ARES members.
Flood Percentages for Fargo-Moorhead Lowered Again; Not high for St. Croix and Mississippi; Decreases need for deploymentSubmitted by J E Regan on Thu, 03/21/2013 - 20:15.
As of April 26, the National Weather Service has issued a new forecast for flooding at Fargo-Moorhead and the Red River of the North. A crest of between 37 and 39 feet is predicted. The dikes now are at 40 feet and that is expected to be adequate. The NWS has a long range forecast that warns of the possibility of heavy rain of between 1/4 inch and 1.5 inches on May 1 and May 2. That rain could determine whether any further action is needed. The dikes were built to 38 ' in 2009 and then raised to 42 feet. The communities have stock piled sand bags for future use if needed.
An Information Folder for MNWASHCOARES Members was distributed at the last meeting. Topics contained included NIMS and ICS frameworks, ARES frequencies, our emergency communicatins plan, deployment check lists and information, a county map and other useful information needed in an actual event. The attendees also heard remarks from Dave Thomalla, Emergency Coordinator for the Healtheast hospitals. Upcoming events were also reviewed. May and June will be busy months, so stay tuned.