NYC Effort Stands Down;
REACT Still Seeking Amateur Operators
CT, Sep 25, 2001- After nearly two weeks of intense effort, the
Amateur Radio volunteer effort in New York City is winding down.
While some operations will continue through today, ARRL New York
City-Long Island ARES Section Emergency Coordinator Tom Carrubba,
KA2D, says all ARES/RACES World Trade Center operations have ceased.
on the World Trade Center Disaster Communications Volunteer Registration
Web site offered "A 'Big Apple' thank you from the ops in
NYC!" to all who had volunteered or offered to help.
continues to seek additional Amateur Radio and licensed GMRS users,
primarily to support the Salvation Army's relief efforts in New
York City. REACT International Secretary Lee Besing, N5NTG,
said his organization has been lining up volunteers, and Jeff
Schneller, N2HPO--who's affiliated with the Salvation Army
Team Emergency Response Network (SATERN)--has been doing the scheduling
for the support effort.
a fire crew from Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, has been among those
offering to help. Others include the WC4RAV Radio Amateur Volunteers
group in Georgia, which is sending a complete mobile command center
that includes an emergency repeater--plus volunteers--for a week,
he said. He said the Salvation Army anticipates that its response
could last up to another six months. Besing said REACT needs up
to two dozen volunteers a day but wants those who are willing
and able to first visit the REACT International Web site or send
e-mail to NYCHelp@reactintl.org. "Don't just show up!"
the American Red Cross closed all shelters that remained open
in New York City on Sunday, September 23, while the New York City
Office of Emergency Management shut down Radio Amateur Civil Emergency
Service support Monday, September 24. An American Red Cross net
supporting two respite stations from Red Cross Headquarters in
Brooklyn was expected to wind down by today. Any remaining Amateur
Radio Emergency Service activity would be handled by volunteers
from the Greater New York City area, he said.
ARRL New York
City-Long Island Section Manager George Tranos, N2GA, expressed
his gratitude to all Amateur Radio operators who came forward
to assist the ARES/RACES effort. "The system works and our
'hobby' has performed well as a 'service' to the public,"
Tranos said. Tranos
said some 500 Amateur Radio volunteers helped out with communications
support for the disaster. "The ARES organization has done
a good job in mobilizing--some being on scene and ready on the
morning of September 11," he said. Tranos also praised Carrubba,
who, he said, "showed the way and was instrumental in the
administration, organization and logistics of the operation."
Carrubba, in turn, thanked the recruiters for "a great job
filling the grid during this incident."
the ARES/RACES response and the cooperation of all involved was
vital to a successful activation. "The key was to have a
structure in place with good leadership who already knew what
to do," he said. "We learned that cooperation between
and among programs is also a key ingredient to success. National
Traffic System was activated and ready to assist." Tranos
said that in the New York City situation, the telephone system
was repaired fairly quickly, minimizing the need for health-and-welfare
traffic, "but NTS was ready regardless." "Thanks
and congratulations go to each of those who helped," Tranos
concluded. "Now, hopefully, we can try to return to some
degree of normalcy."