Emergency Communications Field Exercise – March 31st

 

On Saturday March 31st Seattle Auxiliary Communications Services (ACS) conducted a city-wide drill. Forty two ACS amateur radio volunteers participated and were organized into 5 sector teams throughout the city as well as a team staffing the EOC.  The exercise instructions and plan were kept secret from the participants until the start of the activities.

The exercise scenario was that a significant wind storm had knocked out all power to the region and caused widespread damage from downed trees.

The drill ran from 0830 to 1200 hours. During that time the teams we able to:

  • assemble rosters of members participating on each team
  • visit 52 emergency hub sites and conduct radio frequency path testing
  • submit 172 simulated damage reports derived from scavenger hunt like activities
  • as well as contact the State EOC and coordinate with other teams across the region

Overall, ACS volunteers drove approximately 300 miles in their own vehicles throughout the City to support this mission to collect and provide critical information that would be essential in a disaster situation.

These tasks were accomplished through the use of amateur radio voice communication as well as digital email-over-radio messaging. Special thanks and appreciation to Dean Lambert an ACS volunteer for planning and managing the exercise.

 

 

Up-coming Trainings, Meetings and Exercises

Winlink Training March 17th  This training will be Saturday morning beginning at 9 AM and running until approximately 12 PM, coffee at 8:30. Location: South Seattle College, Olympic Hall, room 101 (where ACS normally meets)  This is intended to be hands-on training with as much one-on-one help as possible.

If you are coming for help, you need to do the following:

  1. Bring your radio, laptop, and whatever other equipment that is meant to be part of your Winlink setup to the class, ready to use. This is hands on, not lecture.
  2. Before you come, go to the following new link: Winlink – E-Mail Over Radio Operations a course developed by Scott Currie for the City of Auburn also see his two presentations from last year’s Comm Academy   Winlink Presentation 1 and Winlink Presentation 2

We look forward to seeing as many people as possible on March 17th, and welcome PSRG members and others not involved with ACS to participate.

Other Winlink Training Opportunities  

  1. Every Monday during our Monday Night ACS net you can go to North Seattle College to our radio room, and get help with Winlink. Dave Wilma davidwilma@comcast.net is the contact for getting to the radio room and coordinates the training.
  2. Additionally, we can offer one-on-one remote control help through an audio/video chat room where you can share your screen so we can see it, and do a lot to get you going that way. The challenge is finding the right person to help and matching them up with you and finding a time that works for both people. This is a powerful tool for us to use. Please email acs-leadership@seattleacs.org if you would like to try and schedule one of these sessions. Include days and times you are available.

ACS March Meeting and Training

The next ACS meeting and training will be held March 24th 2018, 9 AM until 12 PM coffee at 8:30 at South Seattle College in Olympic Hall, Room 100. There will be updates on current projects and work program items, a presentation on the HF SHARES radio system, other training topics and information about the coming exercises.

ACS Scheduled Field Exercises

The March – 5th Saturday drill  This will be a fun field exercise designed to mobilize our ACS sectors and practice field work.  The EOC will activate and communicate with the sectors and other jurisdictions – more information to follow.

April 28th Field Exercise – this drill will focus on practicing emergency communications with our community partners, the Hubs and other teams.  We will be using voice and digital modes of communications –  more information to follow.

HUBs & SPOKEs Exercise was a Great Experience!

SEATTLE AUXILIARY COMMUNICATIONS SERVICE RADIO OPERATORS AND NEIGHBORHOOD HUBS TO PARTICIPATED IN “HUBS AND SPOKES” EMERGENCY PREPAREDNESS DRILL ON SAT JULY 29th.

After Action Review completed – On Saturday August 5, 2017 Seattle ACS hosted an after action discussion at South Seattle College to review the Hubs and Spokes Exercise.  The session was facilitated by Stan K7TEG with a summary prepared by Tim WT1IM.  This information along with reports submitted by the participating Hubs and Sector teams were used by Stan to prepare the final ACS Hubs and Spokes After Action Report now available for review.  The Hubs will complete their after action review on Thursday August 24th at 7:00 PM at the HubCaps meeting to be held at Discovery Park.

Amateur (“Ham”) Radio Operators and Neighborhood Hub Volunteers To Deploy Across City To Test Emergency and Priority Message Handling For Simulated Day 6 of Earthquake Aftermath

Seattle, July 29, 2017 — The Seattle Auxiliary Communications Service (ACS), a volunteer organization operating under the auspices of the Seattle Office of Emergency Management, and the Seattle Emergency Communication Hubs, a grass-roots, neighborhood network of community members, will jointly conduct a citywide communications exercise called “Hubs and Spokes” on Saturday, July 29, between 8:00 AM and 1:00 PM. The drill, which is part of the “Cascadia Rising” exercise series, simulates Day 6 in the aftermath of a catastrophic earthquake, with challenges including damaged or destroyed infrastructure, widespread medical casualties, and reduced volunteer capabilities due to fatigue and resource constraints. Because the Hubs are the major resource for neighborhood situational awareness and resource coordination, smooth communications between the Hubs, ACS, and the city’s Emergency Operations Center (EOC) are a must.

Read more about this event – see our Media Release