Areas of Specialization

Mobile operators are called out more than any other specialty. They can be called to support Search and Rescue and other emergency service missions, make damage assessment reports, transport medical personnel during snowstorms, and stand trailhead watches when it is suspected that reported lost hikers may come out of the woods on any of a number of trails. Mobile operators are also used in support of parades and other civic events. Besides carrying basic survival equipment in their vehicles, they need a VHF/UHF radio rig with at least 20 watts transmit power and with repeater compatible capabilities. Mobile units are classed as MOB1 (vehicle has 4 wheel drive and high ground clearance) and MOB2 (most anything else!).

EOC Operator
EOC Operators are called out to man the ham band radios in the EOC at the sheriff's office when a mission is underway. They need to know how to operate a variety of VHF, UHF, and HF ham radios, maintain a communications log, use appropriate protocol on the air, and support search and rescue operations with map plotting. EOC Operators are classed as EOC1 (more senior in experience) and EOC2 (trainees and general support).

ELT Team Member
At least once every three months, ELT Teams train on the use of special direction finding receivers used to locate ELTs or EPIRBs. The teams usually consist of three persons - one driving, one using the DF receiver, and the other tracking the team's position on maps or plotting bearings. Practice searches initially locate the area of the transmitting practice device by auto, then continue the search on foot until it is located. ELT Team members are classed as ELT1 (qualify as team leaders) or ELT2 (support members). Many of the ELT qualified people are also members of Jefferson search and Rescue.

Community Operators
Community (COM) operators stay in the communities they live in and provide a communications link between those communities and the EOC. They in turn may be working with community emergency teams. They may also provide Health and Welfare message service to distant locations.

Mobile HF
Mobile HF (MHF) operators are similar to MOB1 and MOB2 operators except that they have High Frequency band mobile radios. This capability may be needed if it is necessary to operate in the west end of Jefferson County which cannot reliably be reached using VHF or UHF.

APRS - Automatic Position Reporting System
Although not a specialty in itself, APRS is employed by a few mobile operators. The base station system comprises of a regular packet TNC, transceiver and computer with APRS software that will display objects on a map on a monitor. Fixed objects must have their Long. and Lat. entered in order to be displayed. The mobile rig, utilizing a GPS connected to a packet station, will be displayed as a moving object on the the base station's displayed map. The software for this system comes in three flavors: for DOS, Windows or Mac. The most used frequency is 145.790 Mhz., although sometimes other ham frequencies are used. Contact Phil KJ7ET or George W7ROC for more info.

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This page last updated 12 Jan 1998