A recent radio conversation between two HAMs raised a disturbing issue that surprised both of them.
The conversation involved the NTS (National Traffic Service) that uses amateur radio operators throughout the United States to relay information during large-scale emergencies, such as earthquakes.
When phone connections are down, residents in stricken areas want to contact relatives outside the area. HAM radio operators offer this volunteer service to anyone able to come to their locations
One of the HAMs in the above conversation stated that sometimes in calling people with such information, he is met with suspicion and even hostility. Is he a telemarketer? Is he a drug dealer? Or worse yet, is he a terrorist?
Surprisingly, most people haven’t even heard of amateur radio. If they have, they consider it an obsolete technology. HAMs still perform many services for their communities by providing communications for large sports events, parades, and point-of-delivery vaccination operations.
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