Saturday, December 12, 2009

New Amateur Radio Operator - KF7GOS

Back in November 2009, I finished up 8 weeks of classes to become a C.E.R.T. member.
CERT stands for Community Emergency Response Team.
The purpose of CERT was to better prepare individual citizens to handle emergency needs prior to the arrival of formal emergency response.

During this training, it became clear that communications between CERT teams as well as response teams and other resource was vital. Several of my classmates were amateur radio enthusiasts and gave me information about how HAM radios are utilized during emergencies and in particular how they were used during the past hurricane seasons that were so disastrous. One fellow CERT member got me in touch with the Federal Way Amateur Radio Cloud (FWARC). I went to a FWARC regular meeting and met some of the nicest folks ever. This started me on the path to become a licensed amateur radio operator for the purpose of helping with emergency communications. FWARC holds classes, followed by official testing. During the weekend of 12/06/2009, I attended a 2+ day Technician class and passed. It took about 5 days for my successful completion to be registered with the FCC and my call sign to be generated/entered into the ULS database.

Lacking a radio makes things a bit anti-climatic, but this means I may actually get the appropriate equipment. The immediate next steps are:

  1. contact local emergency amateur radio groups (RACES, ARES) for advice on equipment

  2. study and test for the General class level license

  3. establish a base station, mobile station and supplement with Handheld Transceiver (HT)

Who knows where this may lead, since beyond the emergency radio applications there are possibilities to communicate with people around the world.

If you are an amateur radio operator, my call sign is KF7GOS, feel free to CQ me in near future. Checkout ARRL web site if you're interested in Amateur Radio