The Columbia Amateur Radio Association (CARA) will be participating in a 24-hour emergency preparedness exercise as part of the American Radio Relay League’s national “Field Day” June 26-27 at Trojan Park’s South Shelter, 71760 Columbia River Highway in Rainier.
Amateur – or “ham” – radio operators have been a vital part of emergency communications when other means have failed due to a disaster. Exercises like this help amateur radio operators of all skill levels learn, practice, develop, and refine techniques, procedures, and equipment configurations and further a principle of the Amateur Radio Service through recognition and enhancement of the value of the amateur service to the public as a noncommercial communications service, particularly with respect to handling emergency communications.
“Ham” radio is also a technology that is open to all, regardless of age, gender, or ability. Incorporating all the disciplines of STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math), young people are encouraged to consider this field – there is no minimum age for an amateur radio license – only the ability to demonstrate knowledge and skills on a license
As a “ham’s” skill develops and their level of licensure elevates, they may explore the technologies used to communicate across the country, around the world, and even into space – using methods as old as Morse code, as simple as voice, and as new as the latest digital communication techniques.
Additional information about CARA is available on the association’s web site, www.n7ei.org.
Community members are welcome to stop by the Rainier Park event on Saturday, June 26, during the park’s regular hours, 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.
While this event is focused on emergency communications, CARA members will be happy to discuss the many aspects of amateur radio. Members of the community are also welcome to try some “hands-on” activity using a “ham” radio, under the supervision of a licensed operator.
The association also holds regular meetings and anyone with an interest in amateur radio is welcome to attend. More information about amateur radio and the ARRL National Field Day is also available on the American Radio Relay League’s website at www.arrl.org