Amateur radio operators will broadcast from the Corona Police Department over a 24-hour period this weekend, sending messages via their personalized sets as part of an international event highlighting how nontraditional sources of communication can be vital during emergencies.
The department’s Communications Specialist Volunteers will be among 35,000 amateur radio enthusiasts across the U.S. and Canada expected to take part in the American Radio Relay League’s annual Field Day, slated to get underway at 11 a.m. Saturday and continue until shortly before noon Sunday.
During the event, so-called ham radio operators establish temporary broadcasting stations in their homes, parks, schools — anywhere they can raise an antenna — to communicate with one another.
“It is a time where many aspects of amateur radio come together to highlight our many roles,” according to an ARRL statement. “While some will treat it as a contest, other groups use the opportunity to practice their emergency response capabilities. It is an excellent opportunity to demonstrate (how) amateur radio … might serve in an emergency.”
The Corona group will be broadcasting continuously from the police station adjacent to City Hall.
The Newington, Conn.-based ARRL touts the utilization of ham radios as a means of ensuring connectivity to places throughout the country when modern devices, such as mobile phones and wirelessly connected computers, may not work or be available.
Amateur radio operators have aided authorities and transmitted critical information to the public during wildfires, tornadoes, winter storms, hurricanes and other emergencies, according to the ARRL. The organization said there are more than 725,000 ham operators throughout North America, and their ages range from 5 to 100.
Ham radios generally broadcast on high-frequency channels, with varying ranges, not found on most commercial receivers.
More information is available at www.arrl.org.