Philippines Amateur Radio Association’s (PARA) Ham Emergency Radio Operations (HERO) volunteers assisted with emergency communication support in the wake of two severe weather events. Tropical Storm Kai-tak — known locally as Urduja — hit first in the central Philippines on December 16, leaving nearly dozens dead and forcing others to evacuate. It was followed on December 22 by the more-severe Tropical Storm Tembin — known locally as Vinta — which caused significant damage and claimed some 200 lives in the southern Philippines. Hundreds more are reported missing.
Roberto “JoJo” Vicencio, DU1VHY, said HERO volunteers provided HF coordination through a national emergency net at 7.095 MHz. In addition, local clubs embedded with government responders used designated channels and club frequencies. According to Vicencio, TS Kai-Tak ravaged the Central Visayas area, holding in place for nearly 3 days.
“Much rain was dumped in the Samar and Tacloban areas of the Central Visayas region,” he said. “In situations like this, most radio amateurs in the affected areas fold into the government’s regional/provincial disaster risk-reduction management offices to consolidate the actions of the amateur and civic groups as well as the military and police forces.”
Just two days later, TS Tembin threatened the southern island of Mindanao. HERO reported that it was ready for the storm and able to mobilize the assets of radio amateurs and civic communications group as well as of police and armed forces.
Vicencio reported that the wind strength and volume of rains inundated Mindanao, taking a direct east-to-west path. Residential areas were hit by flooding, and many lost their lives after being trapped indoors by the fast-rising waters. The flooding also took out bridges and roads and devastated farm fields,
“There was a shortage of communications too,” Vicencio reported. “Many major transportation arteries were affected, further stranding others who tried to escape.”
This is said to be just the start of the annual adverse weather season in the Philippines, but Vicencio said the HERO Network is prepared. — Thanks to Jim Linton, VK3PC, Chair, IARU Region 3 Disaster Communications Committee
“The Ailunce HD1. It’s a DMR Radio. It’s a Ham Radio. It’s both. This promises to be the next evolution in Dual Band DMR handhelds. This time I’m reviewing the first DMR radio that operates the way hams operate... Read more
Michael Walker, VA3MW, from Flex Radio talks to us about 4 new models of SDR HF Radios that are about to be released, and some cool new features they have Rediscover radio with FlexRadio Systems. The leader in innovative software defined ra... Read more
An Excellent Dual Band Yagi for 70/144MHz on a 2.4m boom and single feed point The 4-2-12 Dual Band Yagi has a total of 12 elements, 5 elements are used on 70MHz while 7 elements are used on 144MHz. The 4-2-12 InnovAntennas Dual Band Yagi s... Read more