reply, evolving role of ham radio in a disaster

Nan and Sandy Sanders esanders at
Mon Sep 5 22:08:58 CDT 2005

I have been listening to the West Gulf ARES Net on 40 and 80 and a lot of 
traffic has been passed. It has ranged from road conditions to sending fuel 
to EOCs that are about to run out to messages for personnel at a major 
hospital to use the only working land line to call the state EOC ( many 
along the same lines as people could call out when they could not receive 
calls) the same ham having to make frequent reports that the mob that had 
invaded looking for drugs had not gotten to his floor. Many messages of 
people trapped in their attic by flood waters ( these seem to be from 
people using cell phones that would some times work calling relatives who 
would call the Red Cross who would route the message to the Coast Guard by 
ham radio. Some times cell systems would route 911 calls to random 911 
systems around the country. One was received by the dispatcher on a little 
town about 30 miles from where I am in East Texas on vacation.) All this on 
one net running on 40 and 80 meters. The load dropped a bunch starting 
Friday evening but the net is still going. I heard a trapped person message 
not more than 2 hours ago.
Ham radio seems to be used for the first or last 100 miles. The long haul 
traffic is on the Internet not 20 meters.

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