New York City Amateur Radio Emergency Communications Service


As Hurricane Season 2012 Opens, New York Based Radio Communicators
Announce a New Liaison with Counterparts in the Eastern Caribbean


Point of contact:

NEW YORK, NY (May 31, 2012) With the 2012 Hurricane Season officially set to begin June 1, New York based radio communicators have announced they have entered into a mutual aid agreement with their counterparts in the Eastern Caribbean to be able to exchange emergency information in the event that all normal modes of communications fail.

People along the Eastern seaboard of the United States and those in the Caribbean are annually reminded of the all-too-real threat of possible evacuations, power outages and other challenges as a new hurricane season approaches. In response to this, both the US East Narrow Band Emergency Messaging System (USeast-NBEMS) and the New York Narrow Band Emergency Messaging System (NY-NBEMS), both Amateur Radio communication networks (nets), now have a liaison with the Eastern Caribbean Narrow Band Emergency Messaging System.

Maintaining a communication net between the U.S. groups and the Eastern Caribbean group helps provide a critical link for emergency and general communication traffic in the event of a hurricane. The geographic locations, including both cities and countries, which are included in the groups' coverage area include: Puerto Rico, US Virgin Islands, British Virgin Islands, Anguilla, St. Eustatius, Saba, St. Barthélemy, St. Maarten/St. Martin, St. Kitts and Nevis, Antigua and Barbuda, Montserrat, Guadeloupe, Dominica, Martinique, St. Lucia, Barbados, St. Vincent & The Grenadines, Trinidad & Tobago, and Grenada. This new liaison helps assure both voice and digital data can be transmitted utilizing High-Frequency point to point radios without the need to use grid-based electricity or cellular telephone infrastructure.

Information on the Eastern Caribbean Narrow Band Emergency Messaging System can be found on the Caribbean Emergency & Weather Net homepage. The Caribbean Emergency & Weather Net was founded in 1958 for the purpose of passing emergency and general information with North and South America, relating to exchanging weather information as well as feeding meteorological data during hurricane season. The net has been instrumental over the years, providing a coordinated emergency communications capability for both civilian and governments and response agencies during the course of major catastrophes in the region.

Both the US East Narrow Band Emergency Messaging System (USeast-NBEMS) and the New York Narrow Band Emergency Messaging System (NY-NBEMS) nets are made up of many different individuals of various Amateur Radio emergency communication groups from a wide-geographic area. Both of these nets are affiliated with the New York City Amateur Radio Emergency Communications Service (NYC-ARECS), a NYC based auxiliary communications service; they were founded in 2011 by Charles Hargrove, the founding president and current City-Wide Radio Officer of NYC-ARECS. The catalyst for this new liaison grew out of a discussion between Charles Hargrove (N2NOV) and Wayne Abraham (J73WA) of the country of Dominica, an island nation in the Eastern Caribbean. Mr. Hargrove acknowledged that, "Providing emergency communication support to island nations and communities was a priority even in a modern world with cellular phones and satellites."

NYC-ARECS is a member of FEMA's National Preparedness Coalition and insomuch reminds the public that before a hurricane happens, families should make a plan and always consider: in preparation for a hurricane, how you will get to a safe place? If you are apart, how you will contact your family members? If you remain apart during the storm, how you will get back together? And, what will you will do in different situations?

For more information regarding the Eastern Caribbean Narrow Band Emergency Messaging System, please visit Information on the NY and US East Narrow Band Emergency Messaging Systems can be found here: