posted on Sep, 8 2005 @ 05:31 PM
I thought some of you would enjoy this.
Sent to me by the sister of a ham radio operator.
Just one of several every day notes she receives.
Subject: Katrina report (wednesday)
From: Alan KM4BA
Day: Wednesday Evening
Report Location: Red Cross Shelter in Gautier, MS, USA.
(Gautier (go-shay) Mississippi)
We have put on about 2000 miles so far this trip. We have driven over
many downed dead power lines and seen many convoys of military and law
enforcement vehicles on the roads. Our teams have set up 7 shelters in
Mississippi with 2 meter FM amateur radio stations and communications
on various other frequencies.
Some shelters have power, and others
still have no power or phone service, so the stations are operating on
generator or battery power. In this area, the main 2 meter frequency
for our net is 147.440MHz FM simplex, now in use between all Red Cross
shelters here. Now that we have 2 meters connecting the shelters, we
are shifting a lot of Red Cross traffic from HF to the 2 meters nets.
We have so much 2 meter traffic now that we just got a second 2 meter
net running on another frequency. The nets are being run by 30 to 40
volunteer ham operators and extends from the Louisiana/Mississippi
border, eastward and northward to the shelters in Mississippi, and
connects with the Red Cross Operations Center in Ocean Springs on
Biloxi Bay on the Gulf Coast.
Now that the 2 meter net is in place,
much of the logistics is now shifting to localized level, with supply
requests going back to the Montgomery Red Cross Operations Center
where hundreds of semi trucks are moving through the depot there.
Several of the Red Cross shelter managers have told me that the ham
communications is their primary and best communications and they would
be lost without it. They say that even with some intermittent cell and
phone service back, the ham network is essential for operations.