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The Dutchess County Department of Emergency Response, in partnership with the Dutchess County Amateur Radio Emergency Service (ARES) and Radio Amateur Civil Emergency Service (RACES), will host a meeting on Saturday, September 15th at 9 a.m. at the Dutchess County Department of Emergency Response at 392 Creek Road, Poughkeepsie. The meeting will include a discussion and presentation on the amateur radio capabilities that exist during emergencies within Dutchess County in preparation for the American Radio Relay League (ARRL) Simulated Emergency Test scheduled for October. The test is designed to assess the skills and preparedness of ARES, RACES, and key government and service organizations involved with emergency and disaster response. Existing members and licensed amateur radio operators interested in joining this volunteer organization are encouraged to attend.
Amateur radio operators are equipped with the ability to communicate across towns, around the world, or even into space without the use of the internet or a cell phone, proving to be an essential resource during emergencies, such as assisting the American Red Cross with relief efforts in Puerto Rico following Hurricane Maria in 2017. RACES is a standby radio service established in 1952 to provide or supplement communications during emergencies when activated by the government. Many RACES amateur radio operators are also members of the ARES, which provides communications assistance before, during, and after an emergency without the need of an emergency declaration from the government.
No registration is required to attend the meeting. For more information on Dutchess County ARES/RACES, contact ARRL Emergency Coordinator, RACES Radio Officer Dutchess County Adam Nowik Jr. at 845-849-3666.