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BUCKNER, KY, JUNE 5, 2013— When disaster strikes, Amateur Radio operators are often the first to provide rescuers with critical information. During the recent tornadoes in Oklahoma, Amateur Radio – often called “Ham Radio” – provided the only way many people could communicate. Last spring, when deadly tornadoes struck Kentucky and Southern Indiana, operators from Oldham, Trimble, Henry, Shelby, Bullitt, and Jefferson counties provided critical communications in West Liberty, Henryville, Marysville, and other remote areas during the first 48 hours when the usual lines of communication were disrupted. They provide these emergency communications services for thousands of state and local emergency response agencies free of charge.
On June 22, the public will have a chance to meet and talk with Amateur Radio Emergency Services operators KE6YWC and KG4ZPZ from Oldham County ARES. This annual “Field Day” is the climax of “Amateur Radio Week” sponsored by the National Association for Amateur Radio. Using only emergency power supplies, ham operators will construct emergency stations in parks, shopping malls, schools and backyards across the country. The event will demonstrate how they can send messages without the use of phone systems, internet or any other infrastructure that can be compromised in a crisis. Their slogan—“When All Else Fails, Ham Radio Works.” More than 35,000 amateur radio operators across the country participated in last year’s event.
“We hope that people will come and see for themselves, this is not your grandfather’s radio anymore,” said Allen Pitts, W1AGP of the ARRL. “The communications that ham radio operators can quickly create has saved many lives when other systems failed or were overloaded. And besides that – it’s fun!”
Amateur Radio demonstrations will be held Saturday, June 22 from 1p.m.-9p.m. at the Red Cross Oldham County Service Center, 1215 N Highway 393, Buckner, KY 40010.
Operators can even help you get on the air. Come see ham radio’s new capabilities and learn how to obtain your own FCC radio license before the next disaster strikes. For more information on the event, please contact Roman Rusinek at (502) 225-5993 or at firstname.lastname@example.org. To learn more about Amateur Radio, go to www.emergency-radio.org.