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Amateur Radio Operators Test Emergency Communications in 24-Hour Field Day Event

June 7, 2011

For more information contact:
Mindi Mattson
, Emergency Management Coordinator 425-430-7041
Preeti Shridhar, Communications Director 425-430-6569

Public Invited to Participate

Renton, WA – Renton’s Emergency Communication Services (RECS), a group of local amateur radio operators, will join thousands of other ham radio operators around the country to test their emergency communication capabilities in a 24-hour field day event. The exercise will begin at 11:00 a.m. on Saturday, June 25, and end Sunday, June 26, at 11:00 a.m.

Renton’s local team will set-up operations at the south end of Liberty Park, 1101 Bronson Way North, Renton (Bronson Way NE and Houser Way NE). The event is free, open to the public and a great opportunity for people to be on the radio and find out more about amateur radio and emergency communications. Tours will be given of the new mobile communications response vehicle, which has recently been acquired through donations and grant funding. Public visitation hours are Saturday, June 25, 11:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m., and Sunday, June 26, 8:00 11:00 a.m.

This event is part of the annual American Radio Relay League (ARRL) Field Day Test national event. During the test, thousands of ham radio operators use emergency or alternate power sources under simulated emergency conditions. More than 30,000 amateur radio operators across the country participated in last year's event.

Ham radio operators have provided critical communications in many recent emergencies, including the local winter storms, California wildfires, Oregon and Michigan storms, tornadoes and other events worldwide. Renton’s amateur radio operators are the most reliable low-tech source of communication available. During a local disaster when power outages are common, emergency responders’ radios (which use battery power) and the responders’ efforts are the only source of communications available, making them an invaluable resource for the city.

For more information on how you can become an amateur radio operator or join RECS, visit their web site at or contact Renton’s Office of Emergency Management at 425 430-7000.