The West Coast Wheelers Cycle Race was run on Sunday the 22nd of February and this was our first event of the year. The course was set in the hills around Loughrea which has many tough uphill climbs along with some long protracted downhill sections where considerable speeds may be achieved. The weather conditions were not fantastic with rain throughout the event. Road surfaces were slippery in places.. (continue reading)
Archive for the ‘national’ Category
On the 24th of August, radio amateurs from the South East assisted at the Sean Kelly Tour Emergency Operations Centre (EOC). Our primary role was to establish communications between some of the Voluntary Emergency Services and the EOC, tracking, using APRS, the head and tail of the three events (50k, 100k and 160k), and acting as roving weather observers for the Medical Coordinator. The total area covered during the day was approximately 1500 square km.
Many thanks to EI2HIB, EI3HLB, EI5GOB, EI5HHB, and EI7IG.
EI4JN, EI7IG and EI8JA assisted on three safety boats at An Rás Mór in Cork Harbour earlier today. Good use was made of the EI7FXR repeater up at Farmers Cross for coordination. Once all three vessels were back in simplex range, operations were then conducted on 144.525, this allowed for coordination between ourselves while leaving the Marine channels free for Race Control, and more important safety traffic.
Conditions were ideal for the day, with no major incidents. A enjoyable day on the water.
Mick, Gary, Matthew, Conor (EI4JN), John (EI7IG), John (EI8JA), Harley
Our principal task this year was to track the sweeper vehicles in each event, on the day we were also tasked with establishing a radio link with Order of Malta.
The APRS units from Byonics worked quite well, giving us information as to the sweepers location, and after discussion with the Officer in charge of Order of Malta, a communciations link was successfully established.
Everything worked as expected on the day and it was great to see the different organisations all operating together.
We are delighted to invite you to our third AREN weekend training and social event. We return to the shores of Lough Derg, for a relaxing ,enjoyable, social and educational event.
This years focus is on progressing three tems from our strategy which have been selected by members. There will be a variety of activities both indoor and outdoor to interest everyone.
Our host Declan EI2GE has kindly arranged generous rates for accommodation and meals.
We look forward to meeting everyone in Lough Derg House, Dromineer, this coming weekend for a training and social event.
Could those attending please confirm with Conor, EI4JN, and we look forward to seeing you there.
It is planned to have a training weekend over the 13th and 14th of November on the shores of Lough Derg. This central picturesque location has been popular with other Voluntary Emergency Services for training and social activities.
Attendees can arrive on Friday night or Saturday morning.
Saturdays activities will include practical training and a taste of GlobalSET. It will wind down with a tour of the local RNLI station followed by dinner before moving on to the Whisky Still bar for ‘craic agus ceoil’ with local trad’ musicians.
An afternoon finish on Sunday will ensure you are home early that evening. Our host, Declan EI2GE, has kindly arranged generous rates for accommodation and meals. Full details will be circulated to members in due course.
The Galway Walking Club Marathon took place on the 14th of August over a 26 mile distance from Killary to Maam Bridge. Four operators from the Galway VHF Group, operating on 80 metres, manned the 6 checkpoints. Duties included the accountability of walkers between checkpoints, the organisation of transport or medical attention for walkers who were unable to continue their walk and the organisation of additional supplies of water and refreshment to each checkpoint. A half-marathon was also run in conjunction with the main event.
The HF equipment was installed in vehicles the night before the event and aerials were tuned prior to the event. At 8 am walkers were deployed from buses to the start of the walk. The operators made their way to checkpoints and were operational immediately.
Whilst the 80 metre band was noisy in the early part of the day it provided excellent communications throughout the event. Transport was organised for any walker who could not continue and Civil Defence were on hand to assist with any first aid requirements.
Information regarding walker who were unable to continue was passed onto the next checkpoint. At all times the number of walkers between checkpoints was known. The sweepers communicated with checkpoints via PMR handheld radios confirming that all walkers had passed through.
Communication between checkpoints was excellent and an updates were easily received by all operators. Once all of the walkers had passed through a checkpoint, the operator was then free to hop to the next free checkpoint and take up position.
This system worked very well and shifting band conditions had no effect on the communications throughout the day. 80 metres provided an excellent system for communication in mountainous terrain where even the most sophisticated network of VHF Repeaters would be a waste of time and effort. One frequency was used at all times and everyone was able to receive updates as required. When the event was finished two operators, driving home by different routes, remained in contact for the duration of the journey that would not have been possible by direct communication on VHF. Mobile phones were of little use due to the restrictions in coverage.
Special thanks to John, EI1EM, Tom EI2GP, Steve EI5DD, and Arthur EI7GMB who operated the checkpoints at this event.
Last Sunday at the IRTS AGM in Dundalk, AREN were presented with the Arup Cup. The certificate that was also presented read:
“This Award is presented to AREN Communications Volunteers in recognition of their continuous training, operations and achievements for the good of the community.”
Accepting the cup on behalf of AREN volunteers John Ronan, EI7IG said “To be honest, I was caught completely by surprise on the day. That said, I think the award is due recognition for the work being done continuously by various groups country wide, whooperate under the AREN banner. This work includes, not only the operating on the day, but also the public relations aspect, which, although secondary, is of no less importance to the hobby as a whole. I’m delighted on behalf of everyone involved in Emergency Communications throughout the country.”
The Arup family donated this cup to the Society in memory of their son EI3M who died at an early age. The cup is beautifully crafted in Danish silver and is awarded for exceptional service to the Society or to Amateur Radio. The cup was first awarded in 1948 to Howard Coombs EI6J.
AREN will be assisting with communications next Saturday the 8th of May when the Inland Waterways Association of Ireland will be bringing their fleet of
boats into Dublin along the Grand Canal. They are looking to recruit some additional operators for the exercise which will give you a flavour of life along the inland waterways as well as an interesting introduction to AREN.
The operation will be from dawn to dusk but even if you can assist for a few hours during the day you will be most welcome. Contact Liam EI3HK 086 2521542 or Paul EI2CA 087 2523908.
All AREN members are requested to attend the meeting in the Clonmel Park Hotel, poppyfield retail park, Clonmel, Co. Tipperary. The meeting will be commencing at 10am Saturday the 6th of February, and is scheduled to finish at 5pm.
Any non members are welcome to attend, though please contact John, EI7IG (contact details) beforehand to let us know, as we have to indicate numbers to the hotel in advance.