Amber Silver Alert net Program© (ASAP)

Discussion in 'General Announcements' started by KF5THB, Feb 14, 2023.

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  1. KF5THB

    KF5THB Ham Member QRZ Page

    Your phone "goes off" at 0200 hours, rudely awakening you just in time to cut short a dream about a day on the lake with some old friends. You gaze blearily at the screen in your fogging headed effort to decide who or what should be cursed to blazes. "Oh, another Amber Alert!", you think. Then, "Like at 0200, who is going to start driving the streets looking for the missing kid of the week." Then again, maybe you!?!

    In Texas, 2022, there were 262 "missing people alerts". Most states have at the least an AMBER alert program; Texas, not to be outdone by anyone, has six categories which cover missing kids, seniors, military, the generally endangered and those who threaten Law Enforcement Officers (LEO). Not quite 1 per day but about 5 a week. Luckily your phone doesn’t blow up for every alert. You sigh and yawn. You think, “Shouldn’t someone do something about this?”

    Yes, Amateur Radio Operators should.

    It is clear that the need is real and that it is constant. How could we conceivably make any difference? Would that even be possible?

    We have the numbers. Texas has about 54,000 hams. If 10% participated in just one-of-each of these cases then we’d add about twenty pairs of eyes, radios and a significant amount of attention to each search event. (Think what it would mean to a family just to know that ham radio operators were actively conducting a "search net"; out looking for their child. Would this make the news? You bet it would.)

    We have the time. Listen in on your local nets and repeaters; most hams just talk about the weather (though some go out and spot it), their declining health and numbers and some gripe about politics. Am I right? Of course, I’m right!

    Do you and your club want to give back to the community in a significant way? Is preparing for a calamity just a bit to abstract or ‘in the future” to keep your interest. Is passing traffic that doesn’t really have any real sense of urgency or purpose, getting somewhat tedious? Then I ask, what could be more significant than someone’s missing child, or their grand parent who’s wandered (this is the term, 'wandering') off from the nursing home? How about passing traffic from field deployed amateur operators to local law enforcement about the status and progress of an AMBER alert search team? Do you want “Real” ? For a family, searching for their lost grandparent or child, this is the very definition of Real; the need is almost every day.

    Here in NTX, we’ve kicked off the ASAP. You don’t have to be from Texas (but it helps). It is just as relevant a subject/need in your state. Stop by our various pages. We’re posting net procedure, template logs, guidance, instructions and doctrine online.

    Want to know the answer to how you get “young people” involved in ham radio; the answer is be relevant. Relevant means to “have a significant and demonstrable bearing on the matter at hand.” That is to say, we need to influence, effect change, improve, and better the world around us. If not this, then find some other way to make a meaningful, positive difference.
  2. KC3TEC

    KC3TEC Ham Member QRZ Page

    you can get them involved in resources like that providing all hams refrain from using the specified frequency designated for the operation unless they have pertinent information to pass along or relay.
    but that's the crux of it! the amateur operators must be willing to do so!
    once the net is setup and the alert is sounded, operators can log in but once the login is complete refrain from tying up the frequency until the crisis is passed.
    and the priority message should be broadcast in Spanish, English, and French.
    I agree.
    Its a pertinent and great idea, but will rely heavily on compliance of all hams
  3. KF5THB

    KF5THB Ham Member QRZ Page

    You are absolutely correct! Functionally, this would be very similar to some of our "Tornado Alley" skywarn/stormspotter activations. Here, these nets are very "regimented" and given the nature of the event, understandably so. Most hams are willing to abide by operating rules; I’ve seen discussions about various Part 97 issues that really get into the weeds, so to speak. I'm not sure how this idea will be received by those who are basically our "ham radio establishment". An ASAP deployment would, in order to be effective, require much more physical activity of many participants (net control excluded) than to which they are accustomed. That being said, I would think that the only problem with younger hams is having the time away from work or school to actually deploy.

    Thanks for your complementary remarks. I have set up a mewe page (another story, another time) where files containing guidance, net log templates and other “rules of the road” will be uploaded. Also, in the future, we’ll have a page on the ARRL NTX website (ARRLNTX.ORG) and there we’ll keep copies of the instructional documents.
  4. KC7JNJ

    KC7JNJ Ham Member QRZ Page

    This has been my thought for a long time, we don’t get near as many alerts as you guys do. We get about two a year. even so deploying extra eyes quickly in a situation where time counts is something local amateurs could do easily.
    KF5THB likes this.
  5. KF5THB

    KF5THB Ham Member QRZ Page

    Washington is a big state so I can imagine that, like Texas, you could get a lot of alerts in a year and none of them be very close or close enough to you to do anything about them. I checked the Twitter page for Washington and see that there are three active right now.
  6. KC7JNJ

    KC7JNJ Ham Member QRZ Page

    One of the things many people do not realize about Washington is that when you get west of the Cascades Mountains it’s a whole different world. The Seattle metro area is at the minimum 2 1/2 hours away from where I live. We here about 2 1/2 hours away from everything. (it doesn’t matter which direction you drive)
    KF5THB likes this.
  7. KF5THB

    KF5THB Ham Member QRZ Page

    Some states use Twitter to get the message out. Texas and Oklahoma are among these. I have been unable to find media public information outlets for some states. It's hard to imagine that Texas can have over 260 missing persons (2022) and New Mexico appears to have ??? (maybe none). This guy has gone missing from near Tulsa Oklahoma and for a few days. Wow! Anybody from Oklahoma (my home state ;) ) on here? Tulsa?[​IMG]
  8. KF5THB

    KF5THB Ham Member QRZ Page

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