On Tuesday October 2, 2012 an electrical power grid failure has cut power to a large section of Michigan and the Ohio Valley.  By the fourth day, backup generators are running out of fuel and land lines and cell phones are no longer functioning.  911, hospitals and other emergency phone systems have gone down and standard communications have ground to a halt. The County EOC was activated and the local ARES group put on standby.

At 8 AM on Saturday October 6, the county Emergency Manager activates the ARES group to provide communications at the EOC, hospitals, Red Cross, fire stations, 911 and the local blood center.  Since the local repeater system has also lost power, radio operators have been required to use simplex and relay stations to cover the county.

Our Objectives:

  1. Test simplex communications from home stations running on non-commercial power
  2. Simulate external power at 911 for local and packet station. Test simplex communications from 911
  3. Set up external power at Red Cross for HF and local communications. Test simplex comms.
  4. Test simplex communications from backup EOC at Federal Fire station 1

Also the State of Michigan department of emergency management conducted a state exercise using the national traffic message system to contact all 83 counties of Michigan.  Starting on the HF net, messages were passed to local 2 meter nets in each district.  Messages were then passed to each county through the district 2 meter repeater (145.310 MHz for District 3).  Messages were responded to via the reverse order of local 2 meter to the HF traffic net back to the State EOC.

Photos from the Red Cross Station

Steve KD8SQL, Tom N8EUI and Emmett W8EAB at the Red Cross station

Emmett coping a message from the MTN net with Steve looking on.

Ron KC8YVF and Emmett discussing the message.

Ron working the 220 MHz packet station.

Steve working the portable district 2 meter station

Dave N8ERL working the 147.240 MHz simplex portion of the exercise.

Thank you to all operators that participated in this years exercise.  The objectives were accomplished and everyone had a good time.



Revised 01/17/21