Author Topic: How will ARES participation interfere??  (Read 3648 times)

Offline pac1911

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How will ARES participation interfere??
« on: January 25, 2010, 09:27:54 PM »
Went to a local ARES meeting tonight.  I'm certain that I would learn a ton about ecomm from participating with this group as a volunteer, but I'm worried how to balance my obligation to my family during a SHTF with volunteer obligations.

I'd love to hear from those participating in ARES or RACES.

thnks
pc

Offline RIjake

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Re: How will ARES participation interfere??
« Reply #1 on: January 25, 2010, 10:05:54 PM »
It's a difficult situation.  I'm not a member of ARES but am a Rescue Specialist with our state's USAR team and my full time job is a firefighter.  I've thought about this many times.  I guess to me it all depends on the impact to my family if I wasn't there. 
I guess if it's a very localized emergency in my immediate area, I'd be with my family.

Offline jimbrtxva

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Re: How will ARES participation interfere??
« Reply #2 on: January 25, 2010, 10:27:38 PM »
I am single and I know what it takes to get a chemical plant back up/running after Hurricane Rita and Ike.  I do not know how some of my co-workers handled a family, home and work.  Then to add an additional responsiblity with ARES.  That is a tough call. 

The easiest calls would be for emergencies outside your area but not far away.  Your family is safe and you can concentrate on assisting others through ARES.  If the emergency is in your area and has adversely affect you/yourfamily/home, you have to start with your family and home.  If it is an emgency like a hurricane, you make arrangements for your family to stay with relatives out of the disaster zone.  If it is like a tornado with no warning, you have to take care of your family first.  Then others.

Just my 2 cents.

Offline idelphic

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Re: How will ARES participation interfere??
« Reply #3 on: January 26, 2010, 10:25:29 AM »
A number of HAMs in this area question weather ARES is really needed anymore.  While I was not apart of the ARES in KY at the time, I supported the ARES group in VA.  But a few years back the call was put out to the ARES group here to made, and a total mockery was made.

As I understand it,.. one of the group members actually told the Mayor to be quiet, that he was on the radio.  Most of those staffing the room at the time didn't do anything but drink coffee and eat donuts.  Really turned the local government off to HAMs and what they can do / provide.

At this stage, and at least here, most of the service infrastructure has redundancy by design, so ARES groups would serve no use.

Your city / town may be different,..  but here there isn't much of a call,.. I don't participate in ARES and haven't since moving here.  I still have my wish to build a Mobile Repeater / command vehicle,.. but with the local gov being already established,.. there is no point.

Offline dmart

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Re: How will ARES participation interfere??
« Reply #4 on: February 02, 2010, 09:11:20 PM »
Our ARES group has a very good relationship with the local county government.  We also have an understanding with the local ARES groups in the surrounding counties, that since most disasters here will be tornado related, and the damage will most likely be contained in one county or the other, that the hams in the effected area will most likely not respond, but instead take care of their own families.  The idea is for the ARES groups in the surrounding counties to be deployed to the affected county.
Dmart

Offline rkramseb

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Re: How will ARES participation interfere??
« Reply #5 on: February 07, 2010, 06:41:17 AM »
Locally ARES is very involved in ECOMM and local emergency services.  We have our own setup in our EOC, every law enforcement agency and disaster shelter has a pair of operators on station during the emergency activation.

As for family or ECOMM...you CAN do both by teaching and having the family involved in basic ECOMM and prepping for disasters.  Here in Fl we have tornados, flooding, and our hurricanes.  Its just a matter of planning.

BUT...should SHTF...family comes first...not that I would abandon apost, but you have to do what you have to do.  ARES is volunteer and looking at past incidents have never seen one of our ARES guys leave their assignments.

Each and every incident is different...that's why we practice and plan..


3's Ron KI4YQI   

Offline pac1911

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Re: How will ARES participation interfere??
« Reply #6 on: February 07, 2010, 09:47:52 AM »
I had a chance to talk with some club members about this issue.  their message was family first.  I also seem to think that being a part of ecomm could provide some inside info and help in the decision making process that goes along with shtf situations.

My attitudeis simple at this point.  I have too much to learn to not be apart of ARES.  So I am all in until I cant be.

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Re: How will ARES participation interfere??
« Reply #7 on: February 08, 2010, 10:47:10 AM »
I am no fan of ARES/RACES and here is why.

  • ARRL is selling it as some sort of emergency service/first response organization.  It's not.  ARRL is only really concerned with selling a $60 or $85 class
  • There is no vetting, required training, or minimum skills required to be a member.  It's really a bunch of guys that like having a title and really don't do anything more than get in the way.
  • Professional emergency managers (degree'd and certified) do not view ARES/RACES as anything other than a nuisance.

I am guessing that you are petty new to ham radio.  As time goes on you will see local ARES/RACES groups for what they are, you'll have to see it for yourself.  If you really want to be an effective communicator under any condition, take up contesting.  You'll learn to be fast, efficient, you'll learn all about antennas, propagation, and operating under weird rules.  You'll know every feature of your radio that you can operate it blindfolded.  ARES/RACES seems to have this idea that having and HT means you can save the world.

Offline pac1911

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Re: How will ARES participation interfere??
« Reply #8 on: February 08, 2010, 11:30:51 AM »
I am no fan of ARES/RACES and here is why.

  • ARRL is selling it as some sort of emergency service/first response organization.  It's not.  ARRL is only really concerned with selling a $60 or $85 class
  • There is no vetting, required training, or minimum skills required to be a member.  It's really a bunch of guys that like having a title and really don't do anything more than get in the way.
  • Professional emergency managers (degree'd and certified) do not view ARES/RACES as anything other than a nuisance.

I am guessing that you are petty new to ham radio.  As time goes on you will see local ARES/RACES groups for what they are, you'll have to see it for yourself.  If you really want to be an effective communicator under any condition, take up contesting.  You'll learn to be fast, efficient, you'll learn all about antennas, propagation, and operating under weird rules.  You'll know every feature of your radio that you can operate it blindfolded.  ARES/RACES seems to have this idea that having and HT means you can save the world.

I'm not surprised to read your sentiments.  I am well aware of the tendency of any volunteer organization that involves emergency or LEO connections has a tendency to attract headstrong and sometimes inept weekend warriors.  that isnt to say that all who are involved exhibit these tendencies, but it happens.  i still think I will learn from the experience. 

Offline Ponga

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Re: How will ARES participation interfere??
« Reply #9 on: February 08, 2010, 04:52:44 PM »
I live in a gated retirement community with 1138 homes. We have our own Emergency Preparedness Action Committee and part of that committee is the EmComm group which I belong to. We coordinate our activities with the city (which has just hired a full time OEM manager who happens to be a ham) and with the local ARES group. We are not part of ARES nor are we part of the city's OEM assets. We provide services to our residents first and foremost. We have many former medical workers, nurses, EMTs, etc, many former LEOs, firefighters, and retired military personnel in our community. We are organized into medical teams, triage teams, search and rescue, emcomm and security. We have an active communications net that meets on the air weekly and face to face meetings every two weeks. We run exercises on a regular basis. Several of us have completed the ARRL EmComm courses, CERT training, and various courses offered online by FEMA. Individually, most of us in EPAC are preppers to one degree or another but keep our preps pretty low key, especially about personal protection. Casual conversation with other members leads me to think that most are strong 2nd Amendment supporters. Now, if we could just get the remaining 97% of our residents to do some preps, we'd be in even better shape.

Offline pac1911

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Re: How will ARES participation interfere??
« Reply #10 on: February 09, 2010, 08:07:42 PM »
Awesome!

Offline sandanbob

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Re: How will ARES participation interfere??
« Reply #11 on: February 12, 2010, 06:27:56 AM »
I have spoken with our county emergency response coordinator, and they have training meetings every two months.  I think I will join up, and see what they are about.

Bob