York Region ARC ARES requested help from neighbouring ARES groups to assist with communications at last Saturday’s (June 14) St. John Ambulance’s Ontario Medical First Response Competition held at Humber College.
This was the first time out for our newly reformed ARES group under the direction of our new EC Todd, VE3LMM, who along with Ontario South RAC Director Rod, VE3RHF, and long-time OARC members Greg, VA3GGF and Peter, VE3HG, spent the entire day providing communications for the event organizers.
For some of us 🙂 who have been participating in ARES or club-related community service activities since the time when AM was king on 80 meters (I kid you not!) the day was like many others in the past.
(In photo above: The morning briefing and walk-around.)
For example, everything seems more complicated when it’s first explained compared to immediately after it’s first experienced. In other words, no great plans survive the first transmission and everything works itself out as the day progresses.
The nice part of this event is the Amateur Radio operators were escorting the teams to one of four sites where three separate emergency scenarios were played out.
So instead of sitting at a communications desk for the whole day the operators got a full day of exercise as well.
(In Photo: St. John Ambulance first responders came from across Ontario. There were three levels of team competency from new teams made up main of teenagers to more competent mixed-level groups to teams which could include members as highly trained as nurses or even doctors.)
And as usual at these sort of events, we got feed and watered and thanked and all in all we all learned a great deal and had a good time.
Thanks to Russell, VA3WTR, the Director of York Region EmComm (ARES) for inviting us and getting us organized.
(In Photo: OARC EC Todd, VE3LMM and RAC Ontario South Director Rod, VE3RHF at the St. John Ambulance competition.)
Helping out in the local community or assisting other agencies such as St. John Ambulance, the Red Cross or local government in times of need has been a tradition that started in the first days of Amateur Radio.
ARES teams around the world provide countless hours of community service whether called out for major disasters such as the recent tornados and mudslides in the US or internationally during hurricanes and earthquakes which seem to be in the news so much more often these days.
(In photo: Event organizer Russell, VA3WTR who is the Director or York Region EmComm (ARES), on left, and RAC Ontario South Director Rod, VE3RHF worked together to make the day a success for all.)