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Amateur Radio Emergency Services (ARES)

ARES is the function of the Amateur Radio Relay League Field Organization which coordinates ham radio responses as communicators in disaster situations and public service events. Local ARES units are formed at the county level led by an appointed volunteer Emergency Coordinator. A ham radio license is required for ARES membership, as is a registration form listing contact information and band / mode capabilities. This form is available from the Emergency Coordinator. There are no fees or dues; nor is club membership required.

All hams may participate by volunteering their time and the use of their radio equipment for ARES activities. Currently almost all of our local activities use VHF / UHF FM; so hams with any class of license can participate.

Locally, ARES is sponsored by the Forsyth Amateur Radio Club which allows the use of the club’s repeaters and some of the club’s equipment for ARES needs.

Our primary disaster service partners are the American Red Cross and Forsyth Emergency Management. We participate in training exercises with them, and in communications emergencies can be activated to serve in their responses. The most likely activation is to provide backup communications in Red Cross shelters when they are opened.

The major public service event for Forsyth County ARES is the annual, two-day Tour to Tanglewood Bike MS event. Hams are stationed at rest areas and in event vehicles to provide point-to-point communications.

The Forsyth County ARES Net meets each Thursday evening at 8:30 PM local time on the 145.47 (T 100) repeater for practice in directed net procedures and training topics relevant to disaster response and public service communications. All amateurs are invited to participate in the nets.

For more information or to join ARES, check into one of the ARES nets or contact the Emergency Coordinator at a FARC club meeting. A fill-in form to join ARES can be downloaded in the link below. Click HERE!