Meeting notes

Because of Viadocalypse (viaduct-apocalyse), this month’s meeting took place at N. Seattle College.

We reviewed several things including:

  • the progress being made to make the new radio room ready, including the antenna work that had been done and the need to get the HF loop installed.
  • the 5th Saturday drill and some lessons learned from other departments
  • the Hwy 99 tunnel test (more detail in the previous article)
  • PSRG’s trial of DMR, currently on TX 440.775 / RX 445.775, Color code: 2 – Doug also mentioned that there will be some opportunities to learn more about DMR at the Comm Academy.
  • Monday’s multi-repeater net which will include; simplex UHF, DMR, MT63-2k, and a repeater.
  • a few updates that were made to the ICS-217 for incorrect labeling of some digital channels
  • new ACS badges! Rapid tag is now in effect which should provide us with faster check-in/out and better and easier reporting

One additional thing that came up was, if you were at the December 8th meeting at Discovery Park and you received an ACS “Go Drive”, you will need to update the ICS-217s on there as the offsets are incorrect. Delete the ones on the USB and replace them with ones in the Google Drive – link here

After the break, we heard from Lauren Paolini of AT&T about FirstNet. She reviewed how it came to be and explained the different tiers of users and the way AT&T can prioritize FirstNet users, not just over the new Band 14, but across all its bands. Generally speaking the Primary users, with the highest level of access will be Law enforcement, EMS, a Fire, or as Laura put it “Guns, needles, and hoses.” The next tier, “Extended Primary”, would consist of healthcare, utilities, transportation, etc

AT&T claims to have 78+% coverage across the country (2.74 million sq/miles) but also has 72 deployables to extend coverage or service an area that has lost it. Washington has 9 dedicated to the state, with 7 of those being stationed in North Bend.

They are also working on an “Enhance push-to-talk” that would be a radio-like bridge to existing LMR radios over their data network.

Many newer phones are capable of utilizing Band 14, so if you are interested, you can sign up for FirstNet through AT&T. Apparently, the service rates are quite competitive.

Finally, Scott Currie gave us a talk about APRS, what it can do and he’s utilized it at RAMROD. He demonstrated the software they use (APRSISCE/32) to keep track of the various moving vehicles required to support the ride.

If you weren’t able to join us this time, we hope to see you next time!

Fall News and Activities

ACS/MST December Meeting and End-of-Year Celebration Lunch – Saturday December 8th, 2018 at the Discovery Park Education Center 1100 – 1330.  Please join us to celebrate a successful year of team building and service to our community.  We will be joined by Barb Graff, the Director of the Seattle Office Emergency Management and we have invited Andy Ruschak, KK7TR who works as a Wireless Technology Consultant to speak with us about  LTE technology from the Land Mobile Radio (LMR) Perspective and looking to the future.

Hope to see everyone one there – Seattle ACS/MST Leadership Teams

 

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.