AMATEUR RADIO EMERGENCY COMMUNICATION NETWORK
IN HAMNET's Amateur Radio Report........the Philippines again bear the brunt of a massive typhoon......
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WHEN ALL FAILS AMATEUR RADIO SUCCEEDS
Something has gone terribly wrong. Normal ways of doing things are not working. The fastest way to turn an emergency into a full disaster is to lose communications.
Radio Amateurs understand emergencies. For over 70 years they have provided emergency communications for organisations. When normal ways of communication fail or get overloaded Radio Amateurs will be there.
HAMNET, the National Emergency Communications division of the South African Radio League (SARL), provides communications for emergencies and can mobilise experienced communicators who with their own radio equipment will back up official channels or take over when all else fails.
The SARL represents all Radio Amateurs in South Africa at all levels of Government and through the IARU at the International telecommunications Union.
Radio Amateurs or "Hams" use two-way radio communication to make contact with other radio amateurs all over the world. They are even able to use satellites and on occasion speak with astronauts. Radio Hams can do this from home or while mobile in cars, boats or on foot.
Radio Hams have a full range or communication modes at their disposal. These include plain voice, Morse code, numerous digital computer modes and even graphical modes like television. A licensed radio amateur is able to join in experiments using all these modes.
HAMNET REPORT 20 July 2014
The Philippines again suffered severe damage when they were battered by Typhoon ‘Rammasun’, which means ‘Thunder of God’. This report from Greg Mossop, G0DUB and Jim Linton, VK3PC, Chairman Region 3 Disaster Communication committee based in Australia.
As the death toll rises, the count has already reached the 20 mark and growing as debris is removed and more bodies are being recovered. Manila, capital of the Philippines bore the brunt of this latest onslaught with very strong winds and driving rain before moving North West into the north China Sea.
The Philippine Amateur Radio Association President, Thelma Pascua DU1IVT,
activated the Ham Emergency Radio Operator (HERO) network on 7095 kHz. It
worked closely with other responding agencies.
The storm on Tuesday and Wednesday resulted in the evacuation of thousands
of people, closed businesses, schools, 60 flights were cancelled and ferry
The eye of Typhoon Rammasun passed to the south of Manila after moving through
the eastern islands of the archipelago to bring down trees and power lines,
caused electrocutions and blackouts.
Thelma DU1IVT reported that in Manila she had winds of 150-185kph for hours.
At least 40 provinces and cities were under a storm alert.
The government took every precaution to minimise the deaths. Super Typhoon
Haiyan last November killed at least at least 6,300 people and 1,000 are
still missing. About 20 storms reach the Philippines each year making it one of the world's most disaster-prone areas.
The current cold front to hit South Africa made its presence felt on Thursday in Cape Town with heavy rain, strong wind and cold weather that will eventually hit the rest of the country by Sunday. Reports from Rickus de Lange, ZS4A, and operating ZS4DCC from Bethlehem sent us reports of van Reenen Pass being closed to all traffic for a short while due to exceptionally strong winds, reaching speeds far in excess of 110 km/h.
The pass was later reopened to normal traffic but heavy vehicles, pantechnicons and vehicles with trailers and vehicles pulling caravans were still prevented from going over the pass. The Weather Bureau has again sent out a severe weather warning but mainly for the Western Cape.
Needless to say, we are in for another cold snap and there is more to come unfortunately!
Please again stay warm, remember to monitor our emergency frequencies and a reminder that all schools re-open on Monday.
Reporting for Hamnet, this is Francois Botha – ZS6BUU.