Public Service Activities

Members of the AARC provide communications and logistics support for a host of events throughout the year. Usually during the warm months. These events are usually a charity fund raising race.

What exactly do we do at these events?

  • We support the charity that is running the event.
  • Emergency Communications Training for us. There is almost no better practice available for disaster Emergency Communications (EmComm) operations than a live sporting event! Equipment is put to the test every year to keep it running well and to keep improving it. Each time an Anchorage Amateur Radio Club member deploys, he or she gains valuable experience on what works well, and what doesn’t. We must be ready for the unexpected, the unusual.
  • Situational awareness: A few minutes after the race starts, the race committee does not know what is happening on the course. We are their eyes and ears on the trail. The ham radio volunteers give updates as the leaders pass by. Should anyone have problems, they can report to a ham radio volunteer, and we can work to solve the problem. Sometimes racers drop out of the race. If they drop at an aid station, we can report the name and bib number in case family or friends are looking for them.
  • Safety:  We do not worry much about the elite athletes at the front of the pack. We are more concerned with the racers at the back of the pack that are not sure that they will even finish the race. We don’t leave until every racer is accounted for. This being Alaska, there is a possibility of bears and moose on the trail.
  • Public relations: Put on a safety vest, grab a clipboard and a handheld radio and you are now an expert. People will now ask you about the race, radios, the weather, geography, history, landmarks, bears, salmon, eagles, and even the “moose breeding grounds”!
  • It’s rewarding to volunteer your time. You will remember when a marathon runner that is more than 3 hours and more than 24 miles into the race smiles, waves and says “thank you for volunteering”.
  • It’s fun!

911 was called for a runner at the 2021 RunFest

Public Service in 1972

Long before cell phones: By: W6PVF Wilse Morgan

I had an excellent chance to use our repeater system for public service on the 7th of May, 1972. On the way to the Bunny River QTH I saw a spectacular accident out by Huffman Road on the Seward Highway. I put out a Mayday call and KL7HFM picked it up right at the repeater location, KL7USA. He had the state traffic officer and firetruck there before I could hang up the mike.


October 1977

A special commendation to Dick (KL7IS) and Florence (KL7DDB) Collins for their able assistance during the Sept. 24 plane crash at Lake Minchumina. Prompt action by the Collins’s and several Anchorage and Fairbanks Amateurs surely helped get help on the way in the minimum possible time. A good example of the Public Service aspect of Amateur Radio. The drama was also heard by several CB’ers gathered around a scanner-monitor at Yukon radio, and they were as a group impressed by our professionalism and expert handling of the affair. You never know who will be listening, so be sure to present our hobby in the best possible light at all times when you are on the air.


 

If you’re interested in assisting with any of the many events we support, click here to see the list of events and to volunteer to help, or contact “activities@kl7aa.net”.  Information regarding public service events is also published monthly in the AARC Newsletter.

Logging your time is also an important aspect of volunteering for our organization.  Please click here to read more and to log your volunteer time.  You can also simply log your time at the bottom of this page.