July 17, 2014

Moving traffic across the airwaves

Jo Ann Keith, KA5AZK, is serious when it comes to traffic.

"I really love this stuff," she told the members of the RCARC during the club meeting in June. Jo Ann, with the help of  her husband, John, told the club about the national message handling system and how amateurs can send messages from one end of the country to another.

"It might seem obsolete," admitted Jo Ann, "but there is still a need," she said. Jo Ann noted that during the two largest Gulf Coast hurricanes in recent years, hams were the only ones able to get health and welfare messages out of the region.

Jo Ann said that during an emergency, not knowing how to effectively pass messages or participate in a traffic net, "can make a hectic situation even worse." She noted that it is much better to learn how to do it before it becomes necessary

Jo Ann, who lives in the Gilmer area, manages the 7290 Traffic Net which meets twice a day Monday through Friday (10am and 1pm) and once on Saturday mornings (10am).

She gave every member a complete packet of information complete with an ARRL Radiogram form, tip sheets and full instructions on how to originate, send and receive traffic. More information is avialable at www.7290trafficnet.org.