‘ When all else fails’

Ama­teur ra­dio op­er­a­tors get through

The Compass - - CIATHE S -

Lo­cal ama­teur ra­dio op­er­a­tors con­tacted over 100 other ama­teur ra­dio sta­tions through­out North Amer­ica on the last week­end in June.

Op­er­at­ing out of the Bay Roberts Vis­i­tors’ Pavil­ion on Vet­er­ans Me­mo­rial High­way, mem­bers of BARK ( Bac­calieu Ama­teur Ra­dio Klub) joined forces with UTARC ( Up­per Trin­ity Ama­teur Ra­dio Club) for the event. They used a sin­gle trans­ceiver pow­ered by a gen­er­a­tor or bat­tery pack and a home­made wire an­tenna to con­tact their coun­ter­parts across Canada and the United States.

They were among the thou­sands of ama­teur ra­dio op­er­a­tors, com­monly re­ferred to as Hams, who take to the air­waves on the last week­end in June for their an­nual Field Day.

A 24-hour North Amer­ica-wide emer­gency pre­pared­ness ex­er­cise, in Canada the event is spon­sored by the Ra­dio Am­a­teurs of Canada ( RAC).

Be­gin­ning at 3: 30 p. m. Satur­day, June 25, the Trin­ity Con­cep­tion event ran un­til 3: 30 p. m. Sun­day, June 26.

Hams op­er­ate from re­mote lo­ca­tions us­ing emer­gency power sources such as gen­er­a­tors, bat­ter­ies, so­lar, or wind power. They sim­u­late con­di­tions that would ex­ist dur­ing an emer­gency or disas­ter, when con­ven­tional means of com­mu­ni­ca­tions fail or are over­loaded.

“ Field Day gives us an op­por­tu­nity to test equip­ment, try out new gear and train op­er­a­tors, en­sur­ing that if the need arises we are pre­pared,” said Rendyl God­win ( VO1RYL), trea­surer, Up­per Trin­ity Ama­teur Ra­dio Club

“ Emer­gen­cies or nat­u­ral dis­as­ters such as hur­ri­canes, earth­quakes tsunamis and floods oc­cur quite fre­quently,” God­win said.

“ Hams are com­monly the first means of com­mu­ni­ca­tion from an af­fected area where other means of com­mu­ni­cat­ing are non-ex­is­tent,” the UTARC spokesman said.

Hence their motto: “ When All Else Fails.”

Ama­teur ra­dio op­er­a­tors tak­ing part in the re­cent Field Day were: Front (l-r) – Rendyl God­win ( VO1RYL), trea­surer, Up­per Trin­ity Ama­teur Ra­dio Club; Don Fraize ( VO1CDF) and Cur­tis Pynn ( VO1CWP); back – Jim Barnes ( VO1YR); Dave Myrick ( VO1VCE); Ross Trick­ett, ( VO1ROS); Wayne Smith ( VO1TA) and Barry Har­ris ( VO1NC) vice-pres­i­dent, Up­per Trin­ity Ama­teur Ra­dio Club. Fol­low­ing each name is their ama­teur ra­dio call sign.

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