Minnesota ARES has been invited to participate with Air Force and Army MARS (Military Auxiliary Radio System) in their first 2016 communications exercise (COMEX) from 6:00 am until 5:59 pm CST on Friday, 12 February. One of the objectives of this COMEX is to reach as many counties and cities within the entire country as possible. It is expected that MARS stations will be requesting local situation reports from amateur stations during the exercise. MN ARES will be monitoring frequencies and providing situational reports as possible to support this COMEX. The scenario will be: there is no power, no phones (cell or landline), and no internet. Also, internet linked radio repeaters (such as D-Star) should not be used.
Note: only real information should be reported. Following is a list the items (with possible conditions) that may be requested:
Unless there is something actually going on, report everything as fully functional. The condition of one or more of these might not be known, that’s okay, report what is known. Hams can report on any county or city that they have first-hand knowledge of.
All Amateurs are encouraged to forward this to other groups and clubs that you are a member of and to any of your ham buddies that might be interested. More information will be provided as it becomes available.
09:00: Initial contact with MARS on 7.2730 MHz for instructions and information requests. If no contact, then move to 5.371.50 MHz and establish contact. If no contact, move to 146.700 Hennepin Co. repeater.
12:00: Check in to MN ARES Section Phone net on 3.8860 MHz to relay information to MARS station(s). If conditions are poor, move to 7/2730 MHz and establish contact. If no contact move to 146.700 Hennepin Co. repeater and establish contact.
13:00 – 15:00: Hourly check ins on 3.925 MHz. If no contact, move to 5.371.50 MHz and establish contact. If not contact, move to 146.700 MHz Hennepin Co. repeater and establish contact.
Joe Reinemann, KØJCR, has been promoted to the position of Assistant Section Emergency Coordinator-Operations. His previous position was South Central District Emergency Coordinator. Joe will continue with the duties and responsibilities of South Central District Emergency Coordinator until a suitable replacement can be found.
Mike Ostlund is now the ASEC-Planning. He will continue to do a fantastic job with spring flood planning as needed and as his time allows.
The promotion of Joe to the ASEC-Operations position is to ready him for his eventual promotion to the position of Section Emergency Coordinator. Currenty SEC Dan Anderson, KDØASX, will resign from the position effective June 30, 2016. Anderson has always viewed the position of ASEC-Operations as the “second in command” or right-hand person. Reinemann will act on Anderson's behalf as appropriate or when Anderson is unable.
This edition includes various Incident Command System (ICS) forms for ARES use, clarifies the role of the Radio Amateur Civil Emergency Service (RACES), contains an improved chapter on ARES training, and includes all current ARRL memoranda of understanding/agreement.
ARES consists of Amateur Radio licensees who have voluntarily registered their qualifications and equipment for communication duty in the public service, when disaster strikes. Every licensed amateur, regardless of ARRL membership, is eligible to apply for ARES membership.