Well it’s begun, 2017 is now about three weeks old and already the calendar is alive with additions, updates and revisions to our plans for the year.
The AEC team has already had an early January meeting and the enthusiasm was impressive as ideas and plans flowed onto note pads, laptops and smartphones.
As usual, any plan is subject to change right up until the moment of execution. Our previously determined programming has flip flopped and in the process several new ideas surfaced.
Our program on the 24th changed to Earthquake response and our work with served agencies. Linda KE5YUC has recently attended training on this topic and shared what she learned. The planned Packet program has been moved out to May and several Winlink programs are shuffled around to fit the plan. It’s great when our program presenters are flexible and can adjust as life affects others in the schedule. In March we will be doing a hands on Winlink station set up. It will be preceded by a chili supper at 6 pm on the 28th. I will send out an email with more details as the date draws near. We are focused on our SET (Simulated Emergency Training) out in April to set do a field setup of a Winlink station and also survey several Red Cross Shelter sites.
We have not had any recent activations for SKYWARN or any other purpose, so it becomes more important to check into nets and be active on the repeaters to ensure equipment has not failed and all our tools and operating practices stay sharp. Be sure when operating to not quick-key and start talking before the repeater opens. This also allows others to get in the conversation and verify operations. Concerning SKYWARN operations, know that already the NC team has been operational for some of the weather that has moved thru recently. Anytime there is weather of possibly severe nature our team is watching and/or communicating with the various resources we have several hours before it might arrive.
That brings me to my last thought. We have a robust team in our ARES group. Whether you’re a new operator, a member of the AEC leadership, just been active a couple of seasons or a seasoned veteran, you are part of a team that is well recognized. I have had conversations with others in the ARES organization outside our county and you all should be proud of your service, your practice and your work to improve the overall operations in our area. I look forward with optimism as we continue to work though the coming year together.