FCC AND FEMA ISSUE PERSONAL COMMUNICATIONS EMCOMM TIPS…BUT: Forget to Mention Ares!

The FCC and FEMA have issued guidelines on what steps
citizens should take before, during and after a local
disaster, but no personal form of two way radio is included.
Amateur Radio Newsline's Don Carlson, KQ6FM is here with the
details:

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In an FCC press release, Chairman Julius Genachowski said
that when disaster strikes, the ability to communicate is
essential.  However, power outages and other issues can
interfere with the way people ordinarily communicate, making
it harder to reach loved ones or emergency services.

Genachowski noted that the FCC is committed to ensuring the
public's safety through the reliability of our nation's
communications networks.  But there are also simple steps
that consumers can take to prepare for a disaster as well as
practical ways to better communicate during and after an
event.  As such, Genachowski encourages all Americans to
become familiar these the new communications tips and share
them with friends and family.

Also making a statement was FEMA Administrator Craig Fugate.
He said that between the East Coast earthquake, Hurricane
Irene, Tropical Storm Lee, and wildfires in Texas and
California, the public has received a lot of powerful
reminders that disasters can strike anytime.  This in turn
and can often make it difficult for the public to
communicate with friends, loved ones or emergency personnel.

Fugate said that an important part of preparing for
disasters includes getting ready for potential
communications challenges.  He called the new guidelines
simple tips that are easy for anyone to follow and could
make a world of difference when it matters the most.

Among the simple steps suggested by the two agencies is to
keep charged batteries and car-phone chargers available for
back-up power for your cell phone.  Also to not rely on
Internet based telephones that come with bundled services.
This means having hard copper wire service between you and
the phone company central office.  Also, keep at least one
non-cordless wireline phone in your home because in most
cases it will work even if you lose power.  Also have a
battery powered radio or television receiver available along
with some spare batteries.

It should be noted that personal communications services
including 11 meter C-B, the Family Radio Service and Amateur
Radio were not mentioned in the new tips jointly issued by
FEMA and the FCC.   There is no mention of having a set of
inexpensive Family Radio Service in your home.  Nothing said
about owning a battery powered C-B radio set to the local
REACT channel or getting to know a neighbor who is a ham
radio operator that will likely have communications when all
else has failed.

The tips do note that broadcasters are a strong source of
time critical information but also note that citizens should
avoid putting strain on easily overburdened wireless service
networks by watching streaming broadcasts and other high
bandwidth services.

For the Amateur Radio Newsline, Im Don Carlson, KQ6FM, in
Reno.
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