ARRL North Texas Section News
- ARC Exercise
- Taskbook Updates
- Staying Safe
May 28, 2020
The North Texas Section ARES is participating in the American Red Cross Communications Exercise on May 30, 2020. Please work with your local EC to coordinate your activity. The Incident Action Plan can be found here. Please review Annex E (Pages 14-18) - it is a process flow description and should answer your questions about how to participate.
STAY PREPARED, STAY READY, STAY SAFE
Greg Evans, K5GTX
North Texas Section Emergency Coordinator
May 28, 2020
With one month to go before 2020 ARRL Field Day, June 27-28, the ARRL Programs and Services Committee (PSC) has adopted two temporary rule waivers for the event:
1) For Field Day 2020 only, Class D stations may work all other Field Day stations, including other Class D stations, for points.
Field Day rule 4.6 defines Class D stations as “Home stations,” including stations operating from permanent or licensed station locations using commercial power. Class D stations ordinarily may only count contacts made with Class A, B, C, E, and F Field Day stations, but the temporary rule waiver for 2020 allows Class D stations to count contacts with other Class D stations for QSO credit.
2) In addition, for 2020 only, an aggregate club score will be published, which will be the sum of all individual entries indicating a specific club (similar to the aggregate score totals used in ARRL affiliated club competitions).
Ordinarily, club names are only published in the results for Class A and Class F entries, but the temporary rule waiver for 2020 allows participants from any Class to optionally include a single club name with their submitted results following Field Day.
For example, if Podunk Hollow Radio Club members Becky, W1BXY, and Hiram, W1AW, both participate in 2020 Field Day — Hiram from his Class D home station, and Becky from her Class C mobile station — both can include the radio club’s name when reporting their individual results. The published results listing will include individual scores for Hiram and Becky, plus a combined score for all entries identified as Podunk Hollow Radio Club.
The temporary rule waivers were adopted by the PSC on May 27, 2020.
ARRL Field Day is one of the biggest events on the amateur radio calendar, with over 36,000 participants in 2019, including entries from 3,113 radio clubs and emergency operations centers. In most years, Field Day is also the largest annual demonstration of ham radio, because many radio clubs organize their participation in public places such as parks and schools.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, many radio clubs have made decisions to cancel their group participation in ARRL Field Day this year due to public health recommendations and/or requirements, or to significantly modify their participation for safe social distancing practices. The temporary rule waivers allow greater flexibility in recognizing the value of individual and club participation regardless of entry class.
ARRL is contacting logging program developers about the temporary rule waivers so developers can release updated versions of their software prior to Field Day weekend. Participants are reminded that the preferred method of submitting entries after Field Day is via the web applet. The ARRL Field Day rules include instructions for submitting entries after the event. Entries must be submitted or postmarked by Tuesday, July 28, 2020.
May 9, 2020
Good Day Everyone! I decided to do a separate Newsletter for May because I wanted to address several topics with you.
SKYWARN/Storm Spotting/Weather Ready:
A key service provided by the Amateur Radio Service is ground truth reporting for the National Weather Service AND our communities. By providing corroborated ground-truth reports, the NWS can accurately issue weather warnings to your community that can save lives. Without your SKYWARN-trained eyes on the sky, the NWS can only rely on radar data, remote environmental sensors, and single-sourced reports from potentially untrained individuals. Social media has been an ineffective way to provide weather reports to NWS because of the potential for fake reports.
SKYWARN reporting is our most frequent activity. Accurate, concise reporting over the radio allows not only the NWS to make decisions, but the public and emergency management in our communities can listen in and act accordingly. For example, several cities in Collin County monitor the ARES SKYWARN net on the K5PRK repeater and issue alerts to their citizens based on the reports they hear from the spotters! The public uses broadcastify and scanners to listen to that repeater as well. Collin County has received numerous reports from citizens saying the SKYWARN spotter reports helped save their lives.
SKYWARN reporting makes a difference not just to your local community, but also to adjoining communities that may be monitoring. Communities that may be in the path of the storm can prepare and warn their citizens.
An accurate and current SKYWARN repeater list should be provided to the NWS SKYWARN desk and the NTX Section. Please provide current repeater information including node information and notify the section of repeater changes via email to email@example.com
Saving lives IS THE NUMBER ONE objective, and the key tools we use are the radio and our eyes. With these tools, we provide more people with critical information about severe weather that may be coming their way while potentially saving their lives.
If you have issues with SKYWARN or reporting weather, please let me know via firstname.lastname@example.org.
American Red Cross National Communications Exercise:
The American Red Cross is conducting a national communication exercise on May 30th. The local Emergency Coordinator should be coordinating with the ARC Texas, local ARC and myself. Contact your local EC to inquire about participation.
NTX Section Taskbook Updates:
The NTX Section Taskbook was designed to document the training activity of the West Gulf Division in general and the North Texas Section specifically. While there are plans to update Section Taskbook in the future, there are no changes currently. We are looking at setting up an electronic version of the Taskbook that can be signed off digitally.
Staying Safe - COVID-19:
This global pandemic has affected almost everyone in the entire world – medically, mentally, and financially; nearly everyone in the whole world! The fight is unlike any war that any of us have lived thru. The enemy is silent, tortious, and deadly. Everything has changed; whether we like it or not, agree with it or not.
The need for safety has not changed; just the tools and methods that we use to fight this invisible enemy. We all need to follow the CDC guidelines to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Why should we wear a mask? Because it can save the life of someone you love or know. A graphic I saw recently summed it up well:
If a person with COVID-19 is not wearing a mask, you are still 70% likely to contract COVID-19 while wearing a mask. The best protection is for both the infected and uninfected persons to wear masks, reducing the infection rate to 1.5%.
Wear a mask when in public, maintain social distancing AND stay home if you are sick! It is the right thing to do for yourselves, your families, your friends, and your country.
STAY PREPARED, STAY READY, STAY SAFE
Greg Evans, K5GTX
ARRL NTX SEC
ARRL NTX ASM
May 5, 2020
The Mentorfest for 2020 has been rescheduled for October 17, 2020.
Visit the Learning Center to learn more!
May 4, 2020
The May 2020 NTX News letter has been posted here for all to read!
May 4, 2020
Last month I held an online NTS training that was well attended with over 90 participants. I'm setting another session up for those interested.
Like last time, no cost on this, but registration is required as I can only host 100 participants in my Zoom account (which I'm going with over the Amazon Chime setup I used last time - this appears to work much better, so I'm hoping for a smoother experience). I'm also going to try and take a recording like I did in the last session. If this fills quickly I'll look at getting another session set up pronto, but let's see how the response rate goes on this one first.
More details and registration are here.
Aaron | K8AMH
Apr 15, 2020
Have you been curious about the National Traffic System and how it works? Do you know what the radiogram format is and how we use it to move traffic through the system?
Visit our YouTube Channel here.
Aaron Hulett | K8AMH
Section Traffic Manager
ARRL North Texas Section
PO Box 479
Little Elm TX 75068-0479
Mar 11, 2020
PRIORITY HANDLING *** FOR IMMEDIATE DISTRIBUTION ***
As I announced on this evening’s North Texas Information Net (3860 kHz LSB), the North Texas Section SET is canceled due to the COVID-19 Pandemic.
All District Emergency Coordinators and Emergency Coordinators are asked work with local Emergency Management Officials and our partners to coordinate any support with ARES and RACES Members. This support must include member safety training prior to any activity. Please provide any activity, including training, reports to SEC@ARRLNTX.ORG
All ARES and RACES Members are asked to:
* Follow guidelines for prevention that have been promulgated by the Centers for Disease Control.
* Do not report to any exercise, activity, event or work if you are sick
* While participating in any exercise or activity; be sure you are clear as to your tasks and responsibilities that are assigned to you
* Be courteous, supportive and calm – your community needs you!
* DO NOT PANIC
And ABOVE ALL STAY SAFE – Wear proper PPE as directed by local Emergency Management
Greg Evans, K5GTX
ARRL NTX SEC
ARRL NTX ASM
Feb 13, 2020
The February 2020 NTX News letter has been posted here for all to read!
Jan 13, 2020
The January 2020 NTX News letter has been posted here for all to read!
January 2020 Newsletter
Dec 9, 2019
The December 2019 NTX News letter has been posted here for all to read!
Nov 2, 2019
The Fall 2019 West Gulf Division SET is on November 9, 2019, from 9:00 AM to 4:00 PM.
UPDATED: 08NOV2019 ICS 205 Only
*** THIS IS AN EXERCISE ***
Scenario: An unusually cold and powerful Arctic Air Mass has descended deep into South Texas. This storm has produced blizzard conditions in Oklahoma, North, and West Texas, ice accumulation in Central Texas, and heavy rains into the Rio Grande Valley. The combined effects of the storm system have resulted in widespread power outages throughout the Region. Local Shelters are open throughout the region.
Primary Division/Section Objective:
Assess the ability of the Amateur Radio Service (ARS) throughout the Division to respond to a major event and exchange supporting information throughout the Division.
Secondary Division/Section Objective:
Communicate with Region 6 Army MARS during COMEX 19-4 by providing requested information on 60 m
At the discretion of ECs and DECs. Recommended objectives:
• Assess ability to stage deployable ARO resources
• Assess the ability to gather, consolidate, and report Critical Infrastructure Assessment to local served agencies/partners
• Assess ability to service local served agency/partner requests
NOTE: SITUATIONAL AWARENESS information to be shared with Emergency Management organizations within each section and forwarded to the TEXAS STATE OPERATIONS CENTER (SOC).
NOTE: Winlink Traffic to Section and Division is sent to KT5CCG AND ARES-NTXSEC
NOTE: Any radio and electronic communications are preceded with “*** THIS IS AN EXERCISE ***”
UPDATED: 07NOV2019 SET Documents below:
Oct 25, 2019
The October 2019 NTX News letter has been posted here for all to read!
Sep 20, 2019
The September 2019 NTX News letter has been posted here for all to read!
Aug 20, 2019
The August 2019 NTX News letter has been posted here for all to read!
Aug 20, 2019
Two races for the office of ARRL Director and one contest for Vice Director are set for this fall.
In the West Gulf Division, incumbent John Stratton, N5AUS, faces a challenge from Madison Jones, W5MJ.
In Divisions where more than one candidate is seeking the same position, full members in that Division in good standing as of September 10, 2019, will have the opportunity to cast ballots. Official paper ballots and candidates’ statements will be mailed no later than October 1, 2019, to members who are eligible to vote.
Completed ballots must be received at the address on the envelope provided by noon Eastern Time on Friday, November 15, 2019, when ballots will be counted at ARRL Headquarters and successful candidates announced.
The full article is on the ARRL Website here
Jul 11, 2019
The ARRL published more concise comments from IARU President Tim Ellam VE6SH/G4HUA regarding the French proposal invading the 2 meter amateur allocation. That article is reproduced here...[More]
Jun 27, 2019
The Sabine Valley Amateur Radio Association (SVARA) was recently featured in their local news after restoring communications for American Medical Response (AMR) during a power outtage on June 24, 2019...[More]
May 21, 2019
Field Day 2019 is on June 22nd & 23rd. Section officials are starting their plan their visits to various Field Day sites around the section.[More]
Apr 3, 2019
Steven Lott Smith KG5VK took over as the new North Texas Section Manager on April 1, 2019. He appointed Greg Evans K5GTX the Section Emergency Coordinator the next day.[More]
Feb 20, 2019
The North Texas Section was invited to participate in a large-scale Communications Exercise (COMMEX). The exercise, spearheaded at Camp Swift near Bastrop, Texas, is scheduled from 8am April 8th to 5pm on April 11th.[More] April 8-11, 2019
Apr 29, 2018
Is your Field Day Site listed in the ARRL Field Day Locator? If it's not, you may want to add it!More]
Dec 14, 2017
The much-anticipated Mentorfest 2017 has come and gone. As planning is underway for Mentorfest 2018, we look at the successes and failures for Mentorfest 2017.[More]
Oct 9, 2017
The NTX ARES reflector that's been hosted on YaHoo! for several years will be closed down on November 10th. Registering on the ARRL NTX Website and the new NTX ARES email reflector is easy.[More]
Sep 19, 2017
ARRL North Texas Section Manager Jay Urish W5GM is pleased to announce the appointment of Chris Ebert NA0D as the Section Emergency Coordinator.[More]
Aug 24, 2017
In its August 24 1800 UTC update, the National Hurricane Center said Harvey was “rapidly intensifying.” It advised that preparations along the middle-Texas coast be rushed to completion.” The storm was packing maximum sustained winds of 85 MPH. It was located about 335 miles southeast of Corpus Christi, Texas, moving north-northwest at 10 MPH.[More]
Aug 10, 2017
North Texas Section Manager Jay Urish W5GM set out to fill the vacant slot when he took the reins in April. He reviewed the qualifications and availability of several amateur radio operators in the section, and decided Nathan N5REL was the best fit for the position.[More]
Jul 27, 2017
The American Radio Relay League has made it too easy for all amateur radio operators to show their support. With just a few clicks of the mouse and typing in your contact information, you can let your senators know you support the Ham Radio Parity Act of 2017![More]
Jul 2, 2017
Members of the Atlanta Rabbits Amateur Radio Club joined ARES (Amateur Radio Communications Service) when they provided communications support at the Daingerfield State Park over the weekend.[More]
Jun 26, 2017
North Texas Section Manager Jay Urish W5GM set out early Saturday morning to visit various Field Day sites in remote areas of the section. He couldn't predict meeting up with another section manager at the same site![More]
May 17, 2017
Jay Urish W5GM was elected as the new ARRL North Texas Section Manager, and he took office on April 1 of this year. Among Jay's top priorities in serving as section manager was a fresh, functional, and updated website.
It took a little over a month for Jay to gain control of the domain, www.arrlntx.org. Once the domain was transferred, he was quick to appoint Jerry Goodson W5BFF as webmaster. Jerry was able to download most, if not all, of the legacy information that was published on the previous website. Development has been slow starting, but great strides have been made since the conclusion of the 2017 ARRL Field Day. Despite all of the advancements in developing the new website, there is still a lot of work left to be done.