Bitcoin donations to: 1CE9UfWJcHBYkWPns7iqBqZgKhd5xfqEaM thanks!
Buy Bitcoins easily by clicking HERE!


Use coupon radiopreppers for 20% off on the above site.Become a Patron!

Author Topic: HF benfits for SHTF (only) use?  (Read 12284 times)

Frosty

  • Guest
HF benfits for SHTF (only) use?
« on: October 02, 2012, 11:00:33 AM »
Wondering if I'm missing something important here and would appreciate any input.  We're fairly well setup with local comms in the event the SHTF, but nothing that would get out beyond LoS.  We have mobiles/HT's in all the vehicles and will carry one if out hiking/canoeing/bike riding. All are setup for local repeater operation in case someone needed help or a 911 patch, or even calling our local police / fire depts directly.  Our base is always on, and in a central location, for monitoring our home freq and our motion sensors/burgler alarms.  I did play with SWL a little in years past, but they only get used now to listen to a ballgame, or maybe Alex Jones/Coast to Coast if I can't sleep.  Have family scattered around the lower 48, but none are hams or have ever expressed an interest in it.  No real interest in ham as a hobby personally, strictly looking for how long(er) range 2-way would benefit my little local group if the SHTF. 

So given a SHTF scenario (EMP, New Madrid earthquake, foreign troop invasion, martial law, nuclear war, pandemic, or choose your own), why is it  important to have HF capabilities for, say, 500+ mile QSO's with other operators (amateur or otherwise)?  I can't think of any local information I could provide someone that far away that would help them survive, or if they had information that could directly impact my survival, I don't know why I'd need to respond except maybe to say "thank you".  Is this mostly for health/welfare checks for distant family/friends, or to coordinate meeting up with them (or other III percenters?) if other modes of communication are down?  If not, what specific types of information do you see being exchanged or relayed that might tip the balance between surviving/not surviving for either party given the distances involved? 

The only thing that comes to mind might be pre-arranging a relationship with a remote ham physician (after a consultation, and at cost) for medical advice post-SHTF.  Never heard of anyone offering that service however, and the "noncommercial communication" clause would seem to preclude offering it.  What else?

gil

  • Administrator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2944
  • SMeter: +78/-3
    • View Profile
    • Radio Preppers
Re: HF benfits for SHTF (only) use?
« Reply #1 on: October 02, 2012, 11:23:20 AM »
For me it is simple... In the event of communications failure, phone and Internet, you would want to know what is going on and what did happen. A threat might be a few hundred miles away, or even further, and making it's way to you. Should you relocate? Where? Sometimes being warned allows you to prepare.. I can certainly see how getting medical advise could save lives.. Also think about sending information out.. Let's say your community is persecuted by some foe, or downright exterminated, even wiped out by a natural disaster. You might want people to know what or who did it..  Sometimes you might also need expert advise that can't be found locally.. There are many reasons to have HF capabilities. Some we probably would discover after the SHTF. So, IMHO, you are missing out a great deal without HF.

Gil.

Paul

  • Guest
Re: HF benfits for SHTF (only) use?
« Reply #2 on: October 02, 2012, 11:40:55 AM »
The primary benefit of HF radio is 'range', you already know that.  If a situation arises where information from further away is desired then it's certainly a benefit to have.  If the primary concern is local, then HF radio isn't needed.  It would be nice to have, but not absolutely necessary.
 - Paul

WA4STO

  • Guest
Re: HF benfits for SHTF (only) use?
« Reply #3 on: October 02, 2012, 12:44:43 PM »
I am aware of a number of concerns that would rely on HF to be answered.  I would want to know:

Has martial law also been implemented in YOUR State?

Have you become aware of roving gangs of thugs?  Headed MY way by chance?

Has the State Gestap... I mean Patrol been knocking door to door in your neck of the woods, looking for guns, ammos, foodstuffs?  Preppers?

Have you seen signs of uniformed folks looking for .... well, see above.  Could you determine what country's uniforms they were?

This stuff actually happens.  And ham radio has actually saved a lot of lives when it does.  Think not?  Spend some time watching WA1URA's documentary here. The ham radio operator featured here had TWO sets of radios.  One to sacrifice near the front door when they showed up at the door, and then the real one...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PjHAEsrkynw

73 de WA4STO

gil

  • Administrator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 2944
  • SMeter: +78/-3
    • View Profile
    • Radio Preppers
Re: HF benfits for SHTF (only) use?
« Reply #4 on: October 02, 2012, 01:54:27 PM »
Great video, thank you!
Gil.

KC9TNH

  • Guest
Re: HF benfits for SHTF (only) use?
« Reply #5 on: October 02, 2012, 03:49:32 PM »
I can't think of any local information I could provide someone that far away that would help them survive, or if they had information that could directly impact my survival, I don't know why I'd need to respond except maybe to say "thank you".
WA4STO already gave some possibilities, since you have a pretty diverse list of "what-if's" up front. I know that at least twice an amateur in a core area affected by recent Hurricane Isaac was up low-power/batt on his HF, and it was via an external source (14300 and primarily the Hurricane Watch Net that stands up as needed on 14325) that they were able to receive VERY detailed information about how far a temp evac order extended, down to the 1/2-block distance south of such & such creek, because a levee was going to be intentionally released a bit to relieve some of the back-pressure on it to save it overall. I heard it, it happens.

Jim Boswell

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 123
  • SMeter: +5/-0
    • View Profile
Re: HF benfits for SHTF (only) use?
« Reply #6 on: October 02, 2012, 03:54:09 PM »
For one thing, your amateur radio license is controlled by the FCC. NO local or state agency can impede your use of amateur radio. I always carry a copy of my license, if a policeman pulls me over for talking on my HT or mobile radio, sorry, that is not his jurisdiction.
In your family preparedness plans, you need to have a list of contact info for everyone in your family. Both phone numbers and addresses. Next it would be a good idea to have a designated location for people to meet. If your family get caught up in a disaster, everyone knows to call or get to UNCLE BILL'S house (example).
I have been through hurricanes on the Gulf coast, tornadoes and ice storms in north Texas, with basic planning and some smarts we handled everything just fine.  73'S  KA5SIW

RadioRay

  • Administrator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 790
  • SMeter: +45/-2
    • View Profile
Re: HF benfits for SHTF (only) use?
« Reply #7 on: October 02, 2012, 04:00:49 PM »
Another factor to remember is what we've been calling "NVIS" which is HF radio for continuous coverage out to about 350 miles.  A semi-round pancake of continuous coverage, regardless of hills, mountains, urban canyons & etc.  Another factor is that is can be VERY difficult to radio direction find because the signal is not coming from you directly, but is being refracted off of the ionosphere almost straight over head.  When 'they' ask 'where is he?" the answer might just be "He's up THERE!".   :D  Seriously though. a low antenna and a few Watts on HF can give a lot of local and regional comm support.


>Ray
« Last Edit: October 04, 2012, 10:35:15 AM by RadioRay »
"When we cannot do the good we would, we must be ready to do the good we can."  ~ Matthew Henry

RadioRay

  • Administrator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 790
  • SMeter: +45/-2
    • View Profile
Video
« Reply #8 on: October 02, 2012, 04:15:59 PM »
Abdul was using AMTOR as e-mail over radio.  This system us still in place and has actually been seriously improved into what is now the WINLINK system. 

-...-

This was also done by an English citizen of the Falkland Islands during the Argentinian invasion.  Ham op(s) sent recon information and most importantly, intel about where there were NOT hostages being held, freeing the British to strike without concern for accidentally killing hostages. Naturally, he was disobeying the 'authorities' when he did this.

-...-

In Grenada there was also a ham - Mark Baratela - who did a little 'two step' with the communist authorities so that he would hang-on to his ham gear, and he was THE VOICE during the U.S Invasion.


Information is a weapon, tool and yes entertainment.
« Last Edit: October 02, 2012, 11:35:13 PM by RadioRay »
"When we cannot do the good we would, we must be ready to do the good we can."  ~ Matthew Henry

KC9TNH

  • Guest
Re: HF benfits for SHTF (only) use?
« Reply #9 on: October 02, 2012, 07:05:15 PM »
For one thing, your amateur radio license is controlled by the FCC. NO local or state agency can impede your use of amateur radio. I always carry a copy of my license, if a policeman pulls me over for talking on my HT or mobile radio, sorry, that is not his jurisdiction.
True, and always be on the lookout for those who continuously try to pass measures to lump radio operations in with cell/text when mobile.

BTW, one cautionary note. Some states have really stupid laws RE scanners in a vehicle. Right next door to me in MN, no-go - UNLESS you're a licensed amateur radio operator. Yeah, I know - Hollywood can't make this stuff up. So like a carry permit what matters is the ground under your feet at the time.
« Last Edit: October 03, 2012, 05:11:48 AM by KC9TNH »

White Tiger

  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 526
  • SMeter: +11/-0
    • View Profile
HF benfits for SHTF (only) use?
« Reply #10 on: October 02, 2012, 10:31:22 PM »
I am aware of a number of concerns that would rely on HF to be answered.  I would want to know:

Has martial law also been implemented in YOUR State?

Have you become aware of roving gangs of thugs?  Headed MY way by chance?

Has the State Gestap... I mean Patrol been knocking door to door in your neck of the woods, looking for guns, ammos, foodstuffs?  Preppers?

Have you seen signs of uniformed folks looking for .... well, see above.  Could you determine what country's uniforms they were?

This stuff actually happens.  And ham radio has actually saved a lot of lives when it does.  Think not?  Spend some time watching WA1URA's documentary here. The ham radio operator featured here had TWO sets of radios.  One to sacrifice near the front door when they showed up at the door, and then the real one...

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PjHAEsrkynw

73 de WA4STO


Wow - every time I watch this video it reminds me why I wanted to get into HF/Amateur radio!

Could NOT agree more with every item you listed, excellent summation!
If you're looking for me, you're probably looking in the wrong place.

Jonas Parker

  • Guest
Re: HF benfits for SHTF (only) use?
« Reply #11 on: October 03, 2012, 12:18:47 PM »
I really enjoyed "Last Voice of Kuwait". I was very involved in the USCG Bicentennial Celebration when Saddam invaded and found myself on active duty a month or so later. It sure brought back some memories.

WA4STO

  • Guest
Re: HF benfits for SHTF (only) use?
« Reply #12 on: October 03, 2012, 12:55:27 PM »
Yes and I too have some memories of that "era".  I was at ARRL HQ just before the SHTF over there.

Got a snailmail letter from a Petty Officer (Radioman) onboard the U.S.S. JFK which was in the Gulf at the time.  He had just been put "in charge" of the ham radio station and needed some information on just what the dust-laden "PK232" was over in the corner of the shack.

I told him about it and -- more importantly, as it turned out -- the fact that we had Amtor bulletin boards all set up, worldwide, just awaiting his message traffic. 

And, boy oh brother, did he do THAT.  Unbelievable the number of messages (mostly radiograms) he had the troops send home.

Of course, I had no idea, being way back in Newington CT, what ELSE he was relaying.  He and Abdul became pretty close buds during that time, for sure.

I think the RM's name was "Scott" and I think he was an N9...  I do remember that he came back to ARRL HQ after his tour was up.  Some stories HE had!

73 de WA4STO



piggybankcowboy

  • Guest
Re: HF benfits for SHTF (only) use?
« Reply #13 on: October 03, 2012, 12:56:57 PM »
The only thing that comes to mind might be pre-arranging a relationship with a remote ham physician (after a consultation, and at cost) for medical advice post-SHTF.  Never heard of anyone offering that service however, and the "noncommercial communication" clause would seem to preclude offering it.

Now, this is a bit interesting to me. As you have probably seen, I made a post expressing my interest and the importance of medicine in a STHF scenario. To be honest, if it came to that, I would have no problem attempting to provide emergency medical information that people needed, regardless of any sort of "rules" against. I think that the very nature of the broadcast, to help others, would over-ride any said rules, and if they don't, too bad. A human life outweighs the FCC any day.

Provided I didn't have to leave my home in a situation, I would have access to tons of medical info in approximately 40 textbooks I have collected over the years (I actually collect books of all kinds). It would not be very difficult for me to look something up and at least provide some information if I didn't know the answer right away, despite the fact that I am not a doctor or nurse. Of course, there is no guarantee that having access to that info is going to save a live in any given situation, but it is better than taking a complete guess.

Interesting to think about.

RadioRay

  • Administrator
  • Hero Member
  • *****
  • Posts: 790
  • SMeter: +45/-2
    • View Profile
Emergency HF Medicine
« Reply #14 on: October 03, 2012, 03:40:00 PM »
This is actually more realistic than you might imagine.  Long range sailors often seek advice for conditions, injuries and etc. when thousands of miles from anywhere.  A sailboat is not fast enough to get to help and often even a fishing boat may have immediate need of advice. I've heard it done on the ham bands for a fishing boat crew member who had been knifed by a Guatemalan crew member.  The radio doctors walked the Captain through how to initialy stabilize the patient, take vitals, then posiition him for best chance of survival ... the list went on.  The boat was off of the Guatemalan coast and their coast guard really was not interested at all.  The U.S. ham radio operators who put the doctors on the radio got in contact with the U.S. Coastguard and U.S. Navy and the Navy was going to respond with assets in the area.  This embarrased the Guatemalans into taking action and sending a cutter. The boat captain sounded U.S. and had no ham license , but when unable to raise anyone other than the unresponsive Guatemalans, he went to 14300 - The Maritime Mobile Service Network (ham radio) and THEY got things rolling for him - license or not, it was a boni fide emergency and a matter of life or death.

In a societal breakdown, this would also be much safer for the Doctor, if he were ABLE to render assistance by radio, it would mean no traveling for him, which is generally dangerous during a SHTF situation for the obvious reasons. Digital modes such as WINMOR would even allow a person to send pictures of an injury/infection & etc. for the doctor to look at, including from a country doctor in need of a consultation with a specialist.

"Uuuuuh - no Doctor - that looks like your Rolex, not a cervex.  Were you wearing a wrist watch at the time of the last procedure and are you CERTAIN that you were still wearing it after you finished?"
    ::)



>de RadioRay ..._ ._

« Last Edit: October 04, 2012, 10:31:22 AM by RadioRay »
"When we cannot do the good we would, we must be ready to do the good we can."  ~ Matthew Henry

Radio Preppers

Emergency HF Medicine
« Reply #14 on: October 03, 2012, 03:40:00 PM »