In this modern era, the most accessible thing for people in an emergency is their mobile phone because it is the fastest source of contact for help. It makes perfect sense since more than 96% of American adults have cell phones, there’s no embarrassment to use this technology if it is operating smoothly with good signal strength. On the other hand, many people don’t realize that cell phones are an unreliable source of communication. What if you went out of the network? Or your network operator stops responding to you in a disaster? Then what would you do? The answer is communication through radio frequencies.
Ham radio is the only way, as it may become the long-range network for communications in this broken world because they depend on less on-grid power and the most extended range. It needs the power itself to operate that’s why most of the ham radio operator keeps backup as solar power and other energy backups that they can use it in an emergency when the local power supply is broken. When the cell phone network is down, grid power is down; ham radio operators can still chat with each other.
Although, you need repeaters to boost up the signal if you want to communicate long distances. Repeaters also required energy but in charge of these repeaters understand their pivotal role in an emergency, and most of them keep robust secondary backups for worst scenarios.
You are responsible for your ham radio repair and maintenance. If you are new to ham radio, you necessarily need to understand its complications and components. In case of disaster, you will not be able to run into the store for spare parts or repair. In a catastrophe, a ham radio operator immediately becomes a repairman. These repair skills can be obtained by reading books, taking ham repair sessions, and asking for help from local ham operators. Moreover, you can watch video tutorials on youtube related to fixing ham issues.
Studio Setup For Ham Radio:
To set up a ham radio studio with excellent results for survival includes antenna placement and a reliable power source. You should set a power backup; without a power source, you can keep a ham radio but may not use it in crises. Connect cables with all devices by following the instruction written on the user guide for ham radio.
Accident Or Other Incident Reporting:
If you have to report any emergency, use the autopatch approach to forwarding details.
1. In the first opportunity, press the radio button to the limit and say “Break Emergency.” If a signal is weak, try another strong signal to catch attention, do not feel hesitation in interrupting the ongoing conversation.
2. When you get control over a precise frequency, instantly state your emergency.
3. Inform them that you are initiating an autopatch emergency and then activate the system.
If you are unable to activate autopatch, then ask other repeater users to activate it for you, or you can ask someone to make an emergency call to 911 by using your “HF or VHF.” In this situation, explain everything you want to tell; stay hold on frequency until you get a response back that your complaint is reported. Now you can end up the call.
5. Dial 911 directly, and when you connect with an operator, then share your name and tell them you are making a mature radio call for an emergency.
6. When you finish the conversation, release the autopatch and declare you have released it.
Whether you report it by using autopatch or with the help of another user, you should need to give complete information. For example, to report an accident, you should share the details:
- Street or highway number
- Address or mile marker
- Lane directions where the accident occurred.
- The number of injured
- If the vehicle is on fire, smoking or spilled fuel
Similarly, you can report for other incidents. When the operator asks you about information, do not state the wrong facts, just share what you know.
Making/Responding affliction calls:
It is essential to store frequency details in your ham radio for emergencies. You must have knowledge about ham stations and frequencies where you can connect in case of an emergency. Such as a wide range of repeaters and marine service. In an incident, you will not have time to find the frequencies and other details, so you must have it before any situation.
- If you have to make a call for an immediate response, you can give signals by saying, “MAYDAY, MAYDAY, MAYDAY,” it follows your location, the severity of the emergency and the type of help you need such as transportation or medical aid.
- Repeat the distress call for several minutes, but in case they do not answer, any other repeater can hear you.
- Switch on to different frequencies but announce the frequency resolution where you are transferring the call. So, the other listeners may come there.
- You can respond to calls by giving the station’s call sign, “You are connected, what is your emergency?”. Furthermore, use “Morse code,” type “|Station sign| DE |Call sign| PRRR WHAT YOUR INFO?” or something bright, so the distress caller knows about the station.
- After receiving the information, ask the caller to stay on the frequency line, call the concerned department, and provide them the gathered details.
- Keep connected with the authorities as far as they need your assistance. The emergency department can use you as a broadcaster to the distress station.
Investing in a wide-range and two-way communication ham radio will be a good move. Always be ready with these useful tools to survive or save others, and make a setup to operate in difficult times, learn to repair and other functions to act in a better way. More do not forget to keep an energy backup so you can use it when grid power is down. To get quick support, you must have required frequencies stored to deal with an emergency.
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