NCO Instructions for Emergency Operations

                                          By Major Pat McPherson, WW9E

An emergency or disaster can occur at any time! Please keep these guidelines handy and follow them whenever the SATERN net goes into emergency mode. Please study them now-–you never know when you might have to assume the duties of Net Control Station.

1. An emergency net is called to handle emergency logistical, medical and welfare operations for a specific affected area. Health & Welfare traffic is secondary and should be referred to our H&W website: Click on Health and Welfare Information Request

If a station does not have access to the Internet, they can call at 773-205-3528 and it will be put on the net.

2. The affected area and stations from that area have priority. All net controls should point their beams to that area and take full advantage of relay stations. Net Control should immediately acknowledge any station in the affected area.

3. All stations should avoid casual conversation on the net. It is not necessary to detail anything except the actual emergency business as clearly and concisely as possible. Use shortened expressions rather than dissertation. Please space transmissions so that stations with emergency traffic can check-in.

4. All relay stations should repeat all information so the rest of the net and the affected area stations will be informed of all traffic. Please don't just "roger" the message. Repeat so that all stations on the net and in the affected area can hear.

5. All Net Control Stations as they come on should ask for relays who can hear the affected area. Don't hesitate to use them. Effective use of relays can overcome station, location and propagation inadequacies.

6. All outgoing Net Control stations should orient the incoming Net Control completely at the change of the NCO.

7. Malicious interference should never be acknowledged in any way. If you cannot hear because of such interference, simply ask for a repeat or a relay. Do not ever indicate that you can't hear because of it or engage in arguments with these individuals.

8. Please make a brief listing at the end of your shift of pertinent information and e-mail it to me at [email protected]. . It will help with the next day's operations as well as enable me to keep track of our efforts.

9. The emergency net will continue to meet at 1400Z to 0100Z (8:00 AM - 8:00 PM EST) on 14265 MHz in the 20-meter amateur radio band as long as the situation demands. (Of course this always depends on propagation!)

10. Please do not actively recruit while in the emergency mode. If someone volunteers to join SATERN, just take the callsign and go on with the net. Send it to me at a later time.