What is Oldham County ARES?
The Oldham County Kentucky Amateur Radio Emergency Service (ARES®) is an all volunteer group of licensed amateur radio operators who have registered their qualifications and equipment and undergone specialized training for emergency communications duty during natural or man-made disasters. We also offer our communications services free of charge to community events around the area such as walks, runs and bike rides, parades and other gatherings. We use these events as a training opportunity and a way to educate the public about amateur radio.
Every licensed amateur, regardless of membership in ARRL or any other local or national organization is eligible for membership in ARES. The only requirements are possession of an amateur radio license, some basic training, and a sincere desire to serve.
ARES® is organized and sponsored by the ARRL, the national association of Amateur Radio (formally the American Radio Relay League).
Amateur radio operators belonging to various ARES groups have responded to local and regional disasters since the 1930s, including the attacks of September 11, 2001, the 2003 North America Blackout and Hurricane Katrina. Each year, ARES groups around the nation deployed for a variety of local disasters such as severe thunderstorms, tornadoes, floods, wildfires and other incidents.
Amateur radio provides a means of communication when all others fail because unlike commercial systems, amateur radio is not dependent on terrestrial facilities like cellular network sites or computer controllers that can be disabled or destroyed. It is dispersed throughout the community without these "choke points".
And even though amateur radio uses repeaters, which can also be disabled, hams can operate very well without them. The same cannot be said for many public safety radio systems that require repeaters for the majority of the systems coverage.
If you would like to know more about amateur radio, how to become an amateur radio operator, and how hams assist in disaster relief operations, go to Hello-Radio.org.
“ARES” and “Amateur Radio Emergency Service” are registered servicemarks of the American Radio Relay League, Incorporated and are used by permission.
Updated: June 13, 2014