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 Post subject: ZSARC Exercise Proposal
PostPosted: Mon Oct 22, 2012 8:34 pm 
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Group,

NoAm and I have been kicking this around for the past few weeks. We'd like to set up a ZSARC message-passing exercise to work on our ability to send messages into and out of a disaster zone. See below for a first cut at the stations we're looking to recruit. If you'd like to volunteer to be one of the stations mentioned, please respond back here. Once we get an idea of who's up for this exercise and their geographic locations, we can begin making some concrete plans. Notional timeline is 1Q2013 for this exercise. Whoever volunteers to be the "Hot Zone" station first gets to determine the specific disaster we'll simulate. 8-)

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Zombie Squad Amateur Radio Club (ZSARC)
Message Passing Exercise #1

Goal
Simulate a localized emergency and pass health and welfare messages into and out of the impacted area. Messages will be sent from the “hot zone” station to one or more “end point” stations via the use of intermediate “relay” stations. Acknowledgement messages will be sent from the end points back to the hot zone.

Stations
Hot Zone Station (1) – A ZSARC station in the simulated “hot zone” of a local emergency. This station will operate under the assumption that there is no internet, cell or landline phone service available. This station will pass and receive exercise traffic solely on HF.

First Relay Stations (2-3) – These ZSARC stations will be outside of the simulated emergency hot zone. The stations will have full use of internet. The first relay stations will receive HF exercise traffic from the hot zone station and pass it on to the second relay stations using HF, VHF/UHF and/or local/echolinked repeaters. First relay stations will pass traffic back to the hot zone station via HF.

Second Relay Stations (2-3) – These ZSARC stations will be outside of the simulated emergency hot zone. The stations will have full use of internet, cell and landline phone service. The second relay stations will receive exercise traffic from the first relay stations via HF, VHF/UHF and/or local/echolinked repeaters and pass it onto the end points using any method of communication. Second relay stations will receive exercise messages from the end points using any method of communication and pass traffic back to the first relays via HF, VHF/UHF and/or local/echolinked repeaters.

End Points (3) – These do not have to be licensed amateur radio stations. The end points will receive and send exercise messages from/to the second relays via any communication method.

The hot zone station and end points will be provided with pre-scripted exercise message traffic. Once all stations are identified, we’ll begin coordinating modes and frequencies-
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Hoping you guys/gals are up for this. If we get enough responses, we'll schedule this as a regular exercise. In a real world SHTF, this could be an invaluable way of communication.

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PostPosted: Mon Oct 22, 2012 9:02 pm 
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Rhi, Thank you again for putting this together. I too believe this would be a wonderful and invaluable exercise to practice.

Jump in everybody! The more the merrier. What night works best for everyone? I would even say Saturday morning, if some of our friends in Australia and other countries would like to participate.

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PostPosted: Mon Oct 22, 2012 11:45 pm 
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I'm considering taking the Hot Zone. Just participated in a statewide drill for a reactor meltdown at Lake Anna (about 20 miles from me) and that would be a good disaster to use.

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 23, 2012 5:46 am 
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Great, we now have 3 :D

rhi, I will play whatever role you need me to.

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 23, 2012 8:24 am 
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I don't have HF at the moment so I'm probably going to be a Second Relay. KJ4VOV: You actually came to mind when I was typing the description of the Hot Zone station. I'm going to mention this to NYKh and see if he wants to jump in. He'd make a good First Relay to pass traffic northward from you.

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 23, 2012 8:51 am 
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rhi wrote:
I don't have HF at the moment so I'm probably going to be a Second Relay. KJ4VOV: You actually came to mind when I was typing the description of the Hot Zone station. I'm going to mention this to NYKh and see if he wants to jump in. He'd make a good First Relay to pass traffic northward from you.

South Jersey? I can reach you on VHF most days, especially in the mornings.

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 23, 2012 2:07 pm 
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Sure, I could buy into this…
I’m in the Baltimore metro area, on good days I can hit the DC/NOVA metro area on VHF, and I can also do HF as needed.
Not to complicate the drill, but if we wanted to beef up a regional COMMS component there are a number of folks in the VA crew that are getting up to speed in HAM they may have an interest.
In the same vain at my VFC some guys are hams and we have been talking about COMMS, I might see if they would like to play a role in something parallel to the greater drill.

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 23, 2012 2:40 pm 
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NYKh wrote:
Sure, I could buy into this…
I’m in the Baltimore metro area, on good days I can hit the DC/NOVA metro area on VHF, and I can also do HF as needed.
Not to complicate the drill, but if we wanted to beef up a regional COMMS component there are a number of folks in the VA crew that are getting up to speed in HAM they may have an interest.
In the same vain at my VFC some guys are hams and we have been talking about COMMS, I might see if they would like to play a role in something parallel to the greater drill.


I've hit our local repeater here in Fredericksburg (147.015) from Hunt Valley (parking lot of the Marriott Hunt Valley Inn) with a small beam. Not full quieting but still good enough to have a QSO.

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 23, 2012 6:26 pm 
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Here are some of the 2m repeaters my notes indicate that I’ve been able to hit with varying degrees of success. I think I’ve been able to hit one in Arlington as well.
I’ll get on 2m soon and check the current status.

146.835Greenbelt
146.88Greenbelt
146.835Greenbelt
147.225Silver Spring
145.23New Carrollton
147.18Silver Spring
145.49College Park
145.29Bethesda

As for HF. With my setup and buddipole I seem to have the best luck with 20 and 40m.

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 23, 2012 7:12 pm 
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I am lovin' this! :clap:

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 23, 2012 8:18 pm 
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I love the concept, and would be happy to help. At teh moment I dont have a HF rig, though, so let me know if you need someone for the lower-tier stuff. My work schedule will open up (I may actually start having a life) after the election is over.

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 23, 2012 8:43 pm 
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KJ4VOV wrote:
South Jersey? I can reach you on VHF most days, especially in the mornings.

SSB, I'm guessing? Right now, I only have FM on 2M and 440 but it's with decent power (50W) and a decent antenna. I can hit 2M repeaters about 90 miles out.

I can do SSB on 6M, but will have to get an antenna. The one I had succumbed to the elements and crumbled into dust. :evil:

NYKh: Can you hit 2M/440 repeaters in the SEPA/SNJ area from your QTH? Also, please pass this onto the rest of the crew. The more folks participating, the better this exercise will be!

NoAm: How's your HF? Can you be a primary relay for southbound traffic? Maybe pass traffic to Mister Dark via VHF/UHF/Echolink?

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 23, 2012 8:49 pm 
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rhi wrote:
NYKh: Can you hit 2M/440 repeaters in the SEPA/SNJ area from your QTH?


I can hit a few along the Susquehanna and up S/SSE of Lancaster. I'll have to check my notes and see what I have on that. If you have any in mind send them my way.

Looks like I'm going to have to dust out the shack and play radio in the near future.

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 23, 2012 9:02 pm 
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I am good to go with Echolink. With a little more practice I might be able to a little something with our handhelds. Echolink as a definite backup though.

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PostPosted: Tue Oct 23, 2012 9:41 pm 
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rhi wrote:
KJ4VOV wrote:
South Jersey? I can reach you on VHF most days, especially in the mornings.

SSB, I'm guessing? Right now, I only have FM on 2M and 440 but it's with decent power (50W) and a decent antenna. I can hit 2M repeaters about 90 miles out.

I can do SSB on 6M, but will have to get an antenna. The one I had succumbed to the elements and crumbled into dust. :evil:

No, straight FM. Our local county EmComm team uses 146.490 simplex as one of our primary emergency frequencies and we've discovered there's a repeater in Jersey that's using that as their output. Most mornings they can hear us and we can hear them. During the USMC Historic Half Marathon it was so bad we had to switch to a tertiary frequency 5 minutes before the starting gun.

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 24, 2012 8:26 pm 
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KJ4VOV wrote:
No, straight FM. Our local county EmComm team uses 146.490 simplex as one of our primary emergency frequencies and we've discovered there's a repeater in Jersey that's using that as their output. Most mornings they can hear us and we can hear them.
It certainly looks like I could get into that linked repeater system. If you don't mind, I'll go ahead and put you down as the "Hot Zone" station. This is meant to be an adaptable exercise, so we can figure out the details and run some preliminary exercises in the coming months...

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PostPosted: Wed Oct 24, 2012 10:04 pm 
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rhi wrote:
KJ4VOV wrote:
No, straight FM. Our local county EmComm team uses 146.490 simplex as one of our primary emergency frequencies and we've discovered there's a repeater in Jersey that's using that as their output. Most mornings they can hear us and we can hear them.
It certainly looks like I could get into that linked repeater system. If you don't mind, I'll go ahead and put you down as the "Hot Zone" station. This is meant to be an adaptable exercise, so we can figure out the details and run some preliminary exercises in the coming months...


Go ahead and put me down, but I make no promises that I'll actually be around to take part. Remember, I only said I was considering the idea.

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PostPosted: Fri Oct 26, 2012 4:01 pm 
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New scenario... Cat 2 hurricane hits right in the middle of the Marine Corps Marathon and, being Marines, they refuse to cancel or postpone.

Oh, wait, that's reality, not a scenario. My world (Sunday), welcome to it.

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PostPosted: Sat Nov 03, 2012 11:00 am 
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Sign me up. I am HF capable.

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PostPosted: Sat Nov 03, 2012 11:39 am 
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Fulcanelli wrote:
Sign me up. I am HF capable.


Please see... http://zombiehunters.org/forum/viewtopic.php?f=79&t=91050

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PostPosted: Mon Jan 07, 2013 4:04 am 
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i'd be interested too, i've just repaired my hf set

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PostPosted: Mon Jan 07, 2013 9:07 am 
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OK, finally getting back to this after the holidays. I'd like to pull this off before the end of March. I'll start drawing up some node maps and we can get squared away. ethanboris we'd be happy to have you!

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 09, 2013 9:30 pm 
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rhi wrote:
OK, finally getting back to this after the holidays. I'd like to pull this off before the end of March. I'll start drawing up some node maps and we can get squared away. ethanboris we'd be happy to have you!


Thanks rhi! Let me know if there is anything I can do to help you get this together. :wink:

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 09, 2013 9:58 pm 
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Let me know when we might want to run a test. I have a new 2m beam I want to test out.

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