Three Alachua County amateur radio operators will be assisting Red Cross staff at a mass care shelter facility in a Panama City school in the wake of Hurricane Michael.
Gordon Gibby, secretary of the North Florida Amateur Radio Club, said the trio left Gainesville Saturday morning to help with radio communications.
“Trained by local ham radio clubs and exercises, each is proficient in radio communications for both short- and long-range distances, including both voice and digital email systems,” Gibby said in an email. “Local hams practice setting up multiple types of antennas during emergency exercises, often utilizing slingshots to pull wires up into trees for emergency antennas. They packed large batteries and generators should shelter electricity falter.”
The ham radio email system will allow email messages from shelter residents to be sent via the radio even if cellphone towers and internet service are down, Gibby said.
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