Oakland County Amateur Radio Public Service Corp (ARPSC)

            W8OAK Repeaters – 146.900 MHz/100pl & 444.325 MHz/107.2pl

                        Weekly 2 meter net 8 pm every Thursday

                        Hospital Radio Net – 7:30 pm last Thursday of Month

            Packet 144.950 MHz/1200 baud, connects made with Oakxxx or

                        Callsign-# to OAKBBS (W8OAK-3) with nodes at

                        OAKNOD (N8NM-1 Pontiac – most coverage),

                        OAKEOC (W8OAK-7 at EOC) or K8DTX-7 (White Lake)

            APRS – 144.390 MHz

            Web Site: http://www.arpsc.com


Meeting Minutes for 5 September 2012


            On 5 September 2012 at 7 pm, Jim Richards - AB8JR, Emergency Coordinator (EC) for the Oakland County ARPSC, called the meeting to order in the County Emergency Operations Center (EOC).  The order of business included:


(I). Report from Mike Loper, Homeland Security Division – Oakland County:


            Thanks go to communication volunteers who assisted in the Berkley Parade of Cars and Woodward Dream Cruise.  


On 9 October 2012, Oakland County Homeland Security Division will have a Damage Assessment Workshop for building officials.   Up to five ARPSC members will be invited who have completed certain FEMA training programs.  Auditorium capacity limits a greater number.    Also, Jim Richards – AB8JR added that volunteers will be needed to go out with county damage assessment teams as part of the training class.   


In late March 2013, our Oakland County Homeland Security EOC will hold a SET involving both daylight and night time hours.  Our ARPSC members will be included in both field and radio net operations.   Because of extended hours, several shifts may be needed.


At this time, Oakland County Homeland Security is revising emergency operation procedures.  This includes communication assistance from ARPSC members in a document called ESF-2.   FEMA states Emergency Support Function #2 (ESF-2) to be - communications supporting the restoration of the communications infrastructure, facilitating the recovery of systems and applications from cyber attacks, and coordinating Federal communication support to response efforts during incidents requiring a coordinated Federal response.


(II).Report from the Emergency Coordinator (EC), Jim Richards - AB8JR:


            Our main W8OAK antenna is not yet back on the water tower.   There still is no estimate when it will be finished, but Jim thinks it will be at least another 4 - 6 weeks.  In the meantime, members have noted a number of problems with our current antenna site.  The Troy Beaumont Hospital radio cannot hear our nets.  Botsford Hospital radio reports a fluctuating signal.  Jim believes this is caused by using too much power.  Transmissions go to several receive sites whose voter choses which one to retransmit.  A lower power such as 5-10 watts could reduce or eliminate this problem.  If one listens to the repeater input, signal strength is reasonably constant.   Until our repeater antenna is back up on the water tower, some net operations may use the Clarkston on 146.840 or DART (Hazel Park) on 146.640.       

            Jim thanks all 25 ham volunteers for assisting in the Woodward Dream Cruise.    It was the best Dream Cruise day weather-wise that he can remember.  Both the Berkley and Royal Oak police reported crowds were very well behaved.   Even the “Cruise and Shoes” race on Woodward had no problems.    


            The Brooksie Way Half Marathon is coming up on 30 September 2012.  Last year, it attracted runners from all over the country.   The race was completed by 11 am.   Volunteers are needed.  If interested, please contact Pete Gladysz – K8PGJ at pgladysz@aol.com.     


            A Digital Mobile Radio (DMR) will be ordered for our use in the EOC.   After it arrives, we will have its presentation at a meeting.  Several members already have their own DMR handheld which operates on amateur radio frequencies.   This digital mode is not compatible with ICOM D-Star and Yaesu’s new digital amateur radio.           


(III). AEC-Management Team Reports:


            (1). Report from Jim Richards – AB8JR and Pete Gladysz – K8PGJ, Operations:


            Our ARPSC will have a Stimulated Test Exercise (SET) sometime between the middle to the end of October.    This is not the same SET as the October SET by Oakland County Homeland Security.  Date will not be announced so that we can test our system of activation.  Both radio, text messaging, and email will be used to notify members.  Jim likes the ease of text messaging because one message can be sent to all.   Most people keep a mobile phone on or near them.    Also, this SET will have one or two cities including Troy.  We need to get a handle on how many members respond to our activations.   One facet of the upcoming SET would be to find which members are no longer active or in the area.   The National Weather Service (NWS) effectively uses text messaging to warn about weather activations.   


            Jim notes that the Oakland County government uses a commercial outfit that does notifications for a fee.   He is looking for a software program which could be utilized with little or no cost.  


            Query: Regarding our notifications, what will be text’s originating address?  Answer: This will be a gmail account with oaklandcounty.arpsc.    Reason for gmail is that they don’t yet limit the number of emails sent out.   To participate in this SET, check into the W8OAK repeater net.  From this net, some exercise may be requested.        


            (2). Report from Lloyd Suter – N2NGQ, Training/VE Testing:


            Lloyd recommends the following courses for members – see below.  Our basic courses are currently IS-22, IS-100, IS-200, IS-700, and IS-800.   Volunteers need to understand incident command, the proper way to pass messages, and what is happening with emergency providers about them.  This helps the volunteer to better understand his task.   For instance with some emergencies, hospitals could have large patient inflows.   Additional hospital supplies will be needed and the EOC may be the place to order them.  They need to be notified with all the details.  IS-546 and IS-547 involves understanding continuity of operations.   For instance, a hospital limited to 50% capacity has special problems and understanding why becomes very useful.   Lloyd wants whatever courses chosen to apply to us and what we need to know.  In addition, refresher classes for the basic five courses may be useful. 


(1)  IS-22: Are You Ready? An In-depth Guide to Citizen Preparedness

(2)  IS-100.HCb: Introduction to the Incident Command System (ICS 100) for Healthcare/Hospitals.

(3) IS-200.HCa: Applying ICS to Healthcare Organizations

(4) IS-244.a: Developing and Managing Volunteers

(5) IS-546.12: Continuity of Operations Awareness Course

(6) IS-547.a: Introduction of Continuity of Operations

(7) IS-700.a: National Incident Management System (NIMS), An Introduction

(8) IS-775: EOC Management and Operations

(9) IS-800.B: National Response Framework, An Introduction


Do go online to fema.gov and take these courses.  Once you have completed their exam and get a certificate of competition, make a copy for our administration.   Jim Richards – AB8JR emphasized the incident command system must be clearly understood by the ARPSC member.  All these classes give one the needed framework to go out to help.


 (IV). Specialty Officer/Coordinator Reports:


             (1). Report from Ron Miotke – WD8MNX, Membership:


             A lot of work is being put into our membership application/renewal for our website.  Ron has collected membership information from several sources and will be putting in an interface permitting information to go to Steve Iannucci - Homeland Security Division.   At the next meeting, Ron will have an URL address.   He wants members to update him on all FEMA or IS courses successfully completed.  In addition with our website providing information to the reader, Ron wants it to be 2-way.  


            Ron has recently received emails from persons requesting more information about this organization.  He invites interested hams to visit our meetings.   Hams living outside Oakland County can join us.


            (2). Report from Ted Davis – N8ZSA, Sirens:


            Our last Siren Test was held 1 September 2012.   Ted was out of town during the test, so that the actual report has not been finished.  Both the Northeast and Northwest Quadrant subnets need additional help to complete this year’s first time coverage of their sirens.  These areas don’t have enough hams to assist, so that volunteers from other areas would be most appreciated.  Before the end of year, the county expects to add additional sirens which will need coverage.   Mike Nebel – N3BEL reminds volunteers to first contact the correct subnet coordinator for assignment in order to prevent two people covering the same siren.


            The Northeast Subnet is on the USECA repeater at 147.180MHz/100pl.   Brad Maney – KD8QPF is the coordinator and volunteers can contract him at kd8qpf@gmail.com.   Note that the address is not gmail.net.  About 25-26 sirens still need first time coverage this year.


            The Northwest Subnet is on the Clarkston Repeat at 146.840MHz/100pl.  Net operations are run by Greg Siemasz – W8VIJ and Dave Valentine – W8DPV.  For information and to volunteer contact either siemasz@sbcglobal.net or w8dpv@comcast.net.   About 20 sirens still need first time coverage. 


            (3). Report from Maurice Davidson – K8SJD, National Weather Service Liaison:


            There are usually about 11 days per year with 90+ temperatures in Metro Detroit.    So far this year, there have been 27.   The NWS open house last month had over 1000 visitors.


(V). New and Other Items of Interest:


(1). Donations are requested for Phil Ross’ repeater 442.500MHz/107.2pl.  Antenna for his repeater is reported to be up 29 stories in Detroit.  Building owners require liability insurance, which now costs about $1000 per year.   Previously, his company insurance carried this at a lesser cost and Phil now needs support to continue the repeater.    His email address is philross1@gmail.com.  


(2). Morrie Davidson – K8SJD reminds anyone licensed in amateur radio for 25 years may be qualified to join qcwa.org (Quarter Century Wireless Association).  Also, Morrie has Michigan license applications for hams wanting an amateur radio license plate.        


Respectfully submitted,

James R. Murphy, N8SML

Secretary, Oakland County, ARPSC

6 September 2012

Minutes corrected and approved by Jim Richards – AB8JR, EC