Amateur radio operators hit emergency airwaves

Nanaimo Amateur Radio Association held its annual field day.

Nanaimo Amateur Radio Association members Katherine Banman and Jean Michel Hanssens are on the air during the association’s field day June 23-24.

Nanaimo Amateur Radio Association members Katherine Banman and Jean Michel Hanssens are on the air during the association’s field day June 23-24.

Emergency communications preparedness among amateur radio operators in Canada and the U.S. hit the airwaves June 23-24 as the Nanaimo Amateur Radio Association held its annual field day.

The club’s celebrating its 64th anniversary this year, set up radios, antennas and other communications equipment at its temporary station at the parking lot at the end of Northfield Road and the Nanaimo Parkway.

There is a competitive element to the field day, with points awarded to participating clubs for using alternative power sources and innovative and experimental equipment.

Points are also awarded for the type and number of radio contacts made during the 24-hour event.

Association members are licensed to operate on various radio frequencies using Morse code or voice to communicate with hundreds of other operators across North America while taking their turn operating the club’s radios.

The 24-hour period did not have the best of conditions for the radio waves to travel, but the club still managed to contact 206 other radio stations in the U.S. and Canada by voice and 12 by Morse code.

The association is part of the Provincial Emergency Program and plays an important role within the City of Nanaimo and Regional District of Nanaimo emergency management programs.

Members also volunteer time and equipment to provide communications at various community events.

For information, please go to www.ve7na.ca or call 250-714-6819.

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