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Each year, Hawaii State Civil Defense in cooperation with a number of governmental and private agencies conduct a state-wide exercise to test and evaluate preparations for operations before, during and after a hurricane. The exercise, entitled Makani Pahili, will be conducted on Saturday, June 1, 2013 9:00 am - 12 noon.

This event will be the largest simultaneous, multi-site, multi-band communications exercise in the history of the Hawaii amateur radio community concentrating on two-way exchanges of simulated messages.

These are the arrangements underway within the amateur radio community in preparation for participating in the exercise. If you know of any, please contact Ron Hashiro, AH6RH

Be sure to click the REFRESH button on your browser to get the latest version of this page.

Enjoy, and feel free to drop me an e-mail if you have any questions.


Objective

May 21, 2013

The most frequently heard remark after Hurricane Iniki was that we as amateur radio operators should have been better prepared. The amateurs on Kauai and Oahu were challenged to exchange and deliver hundreds of messages accurately in a timely fashion each hour for many hours. The messages were a mix of short messages and some that were multiple pages in length. Most of the messages were handled by voice communications as that was the means that most operators had operational.

The Makani Pahili 2013 hurricane exercise is a major preparation for next year's Makani Pahili 2014 exercise. Next year's exercise will be a major and more extensive exercise because all four counties need to exercise their respective castastrophic plans.

A major part of the Makani Pahili exercise is for all operators to deploy and set up their stations and for the operators to gain experience, speed, accuracy and proficiency in sending and receiving ICS-213 messages between the nets and under net operating conditions. It tests existing arrangements and capabilities between the amateurs and the agencies and communities that we serve. It tests the operator's ability to generate and efficiently exchange ICS-213 messages under actual net operating conditions and changing radio propagation.

Stations are encouraged to generate and send test messages for the exercise, gain practice and become proficient BEFORE the next emergency or disaster. Stations are encouraged to generate ICS-213 messages that contain an actionable request as opposed to simply a message that has just status and is informational. This is so that the receiving party can generate a message containing a simulated reply. All stations will use "THIS IS AN EXERCISE MESSAGE" at the beginning and end of all messages.

Stations are encouraged to use FLDigi to exchange ICS-213 messages digitally. FLDigi v3.21.72, FLmsg v1.1.31 and FLwrap v1.3.4 may be downloaded at this web page. Stations may send and receive messages by holding the PC mike and speakers next to the radio mike and speakers. The preferred method is to use a Tigertronics Signalink USB Interface with the 6-pin mini-DIN (Data) interface cable to use with amateur radios manufactured after 1996. New

Net Control Stations, bulletin stations and net liaison stations are encouraged to pass the net bulletins on the nets to simulate and practice passing net bulletins.

A PDF version and an MS Word version of the net preamble and net bulletins became available on May 27, 2013. New

2013 Hurricane Makani Scenario

May 19, 2013, updated May 23, 2013

The hurricane scenerio:

Hurricane Makani will be a category 4 hurricane as it develops to the east of the Big Island. It will travel east of the Big Island coast as a category 3 hurricane and travel north between Big Island and Maui. It will continue as a category 3 hurricane as it travel north along the western coastline of Maui, Lanai, Molokai and Oahu. As it travels further north and west of Kauai it will be a cateogry 2 hurricane.

The highlights of the exercise scenario:

All islands will be affected. A Mass Care EOC Drill for the island of Oahu will be held at the City & County of Honolulu Department of Emergency Management (DEM) on Friday, May 31, 2013. On Saturday June 1, 2013, amateur radio operators at State Civil Defense EOC and other state-wide locations will be operational. C&C of Honolulu Department of Emergency Management (DEM) will exercise three shelters and request amateur radio operators provide shelter communications from these three sites. DEM will participate on the June 5 communications exercise.

The Windward Oahu Hams will do shelter communications from the Department of Education (DOE) hub schools. The Hams will operate from the school parking lot of the Windward Oahu hub schools (Waimanalo Elementary and Intermediate, Kailua High, Kalaheo High, Castle High, King Intermediate as well as from Lanikai Elementary, Ahuimanu Elementary, and from Kailua Elementary.) The group seeks to exercise FLDigi MT63 for formal messages and voice tactical messages on 147.000+ PL 103.5 repeater, on 146.505 simplex and from the DEM portable UHF repeater, 444.175 (+). The group will probably operate on HF as well and the exercise will be similar to what was done for Makani Pahili 2012.

On Monday June 3, 2013, Hurricane Makani will first hit Big Island and Honokaa will be affected in this exercise for Hawaii county. They will be exercising their shelters and Honokaa Hospital will be simulated as damaged.

On Wednesday June 5th, Maui and Oahu will be responding to the affects of the hurricane. From 10:00 am to 2:00 pm, DEM will conduct an exercise. A part of that exercise is a one hour simulated communication outage in which the only communications between Oahu DEM EOC and State Civil Defense EOC in Diamond Head will be via amateur radio.

On Wednesday June 5th, Kauai will be hunkered down due to category 2 hurricane force winds. They will have Kauai Hams also participate on June 5th from their EOC.

Hawaii County Civil Defense Agency will experience communication failure and hope to exercise amateur radio communications on June 5th. Maui will hope Hams will be able to operate also on June 5 from the Maui Civil Defense Agency EOC. They will exercise a shelter exercise.

Windward Oahu District 4 FLDigi Practice Net, Thursday May 23, 2013 8:00 pm

May 22, 2013 New

From Clem Jung KH7HO. The amateur radio operators in the Windward Oahu District 4 will hold an FLDigi MT63-2K practice net. (MT63-2KL, if you updated to FLDigi version .71 or .72 [the latest version]) The practice net Thursday, May 23, 2013, 8:00 p.m. on the 147.000 MHz PL 103.5 repeater in Kailua. Please join us.

For those who do not have FLDigi capability, please check in. We will have a discussion on this coming Makani Pahili 2013 exercise for Windward Oahu, and then we will do the FLDigi exercise.

Saturday, June 1, 2013 Net Timeline

May 19, 2013, updated May 21, 2013

Various sites and EOCs will open before 9:00 am to set up and test the equipment for the net which starts at 9:00 am.

The preliminary timeline for the net on Saturday, June 1, 2013 from 9:00 am to 12 noon is:

  • 9:00 am, start the net. Announce net preamble, take check-ins, start message handling
  • 9:10 am, simulated 20 mph winds arrive on the coasts of all major Hawaiian Islands. Residents are seeking shelter in place or at designated shelters.
  • 9:45 am, simulated 75+ mph winds arrive on the windward coasts of all major Hawaiian Islands. Winds gusts up to 132 mph or more may be experienced. HF antennas on towers fail. Loss of commercial power. Mobile operators forced to cease operations due to flying debris. Only hurricane-rated repeaters remain on the air. Operators next to glass windows forced to withdraw to safer interior rooms. (If you're in a concrete building, move to an interior room and test simplex operations.)
  • 10:15 am, End of damaging winds. Residents leave shelters and begin post-hurricane assessment, clean-up and relief operations. Initial field damage assessment possible.
  • 11:50 am, Prepare to wind down the net. Announce final statistics (if available)
  • 12 noon, close the net

Messages will be exchanged in ICS-213 message format.

Island of Oahu
Agency
HF
VHF
UHF
FLDigi
APRS
Hawaii SCD 1870 LSB, 3993.5 LSB, 5330.5 USB, 7088 LSB 147.06+ PL 103.5, 147.02+ PL 103.5, 147.04+, Liaison: 146.88- 444.35+ PL 103.5 for DEM voice and FLDigi traffic 7088 LSB, 147.06+ PL 103.5, 444.35+ PL 103.5 Yes
DEM 7098 LSB New 146.88-, 146.98- PL 88.5, 146.76-, 146.82-, 147.12+ Simplex: 146.55, 146.58 444.350+ PL 103.5 for Voice and FLDigi traffic 7098 LSB, 444.350+ PL 103.5 No
DEM District 4-Windward Oahu 7098 LSB Voice/FLDigi 146.66-, 147.00+ PL 103.5, 146.505 Simplex Voice/FLDigi, Liaison: 146.88- for DEM voice traffic, 146.55, 146.58 444.175+ No PL for District IV Voice traffic, 444.325+ PL 103.5 for DEM voice traffic 7098 LSB and VHF/UHF No
Healthcomm 3888 LSB,5371.5 USB,7080 LSB 147.280+ 443.825+, 443.775+ PL 123.0, 444.775+ PL 123.0 TBD No

State CD RACES/ARES

May 20, 2013

Statewide Hurricane Exercise - State CD RACES/ARES participation.

Expected path of the simulated exercise Category 3 or 4 hurricane as it passes near the major Hawaiian Islands, approximately 50 to 75 miles off-shore from the windward coasts of the islands.


May 31, 5:00 pm HST - Hurricane warning in effect for all of Hawaii
June 1, 9:10 am HST - Simulate people sheltering at home or evacuating into shelters.
June 1, 9:45 am HST - Simulate people in shelters with damaging winds outdoors.
June 1, 10:15 am HST - End of damaging winds outdoors. People able to leave shelters.
June 1, 11:50 am HST - Prepare to close the exercise radio net.
June 3 - All clear issued, post disaster assessment and recovery phase begins

Call signs:
SCD - KH6HPZ

SCD will be on the following frequencies at differing times:

HF - Command/Control/Message Handling

147.060+ PL 103.5 - DH Repeater - Command/Control/Message Handling
146.880 - DH Repeater - for interoperation with Oahu DEM RACES
444.350+ PL 103.5 - DH Repeater - for interoperation with Oahu DEM RACES
144.390 - APRS

Initial contact will be made on the 147.060 repeater. Stations will then be moved to another frequency, if possible, to handle traffic.

HF will also be used as follows to communicate with SCD and to exercise NVIS.

SCD will be on the SCD interisland net:
40m on 7088 kHz LSB (+/- qrm)
60m on 5330.5 kHz USB (Channel 1) (+/- qrm)
80m on 3993.5 kHz LSB (if 40m is not open)

Messages will be exchanged in ICS-213 message format. A major part of this exercise is to gain experience in sending and receiving ICS-213 messages. Stations are encouraged to generate and send test messages for the exercise. All stations will use "THIS IS AN EXERCISE MESSAGE" at the beginning and end of all messages.

Net Schedule:
Saturday (June 1) will be from 9:00 am to 12:00 pm. KH6HPZ at State CD will be operating. Testing to occur before 9:00 am. The RACES operators will simulate and generate reply messages for the Saturday exercise net.

SCD will be operating FLDigi on HF. Mode will be MT63 with 2K (default) or 1K sliding windows. (Subject to change.) New

On Wednesday, June 5, SCD RACES will operate from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm to receive traffic. The messages will be forwarded to SCD staff as part of the simulation and exercise.

Oahu DEM RACES

May 21, 2013, updated May 23, 2013

Statewide Hurricane Exercise - Oahu DEM RACES participation.

  • District 1 - Oahu EOC
  • District 3 - Waialua Intermediate and High School Shelter Exercise - Bill Osborn KH6KV, Jim Connell KH6JKG.
  • District 4 - See Windward Oahu District below
  • District 6 - Halawa District Park - Peter Yuen KH6JBS, Chris Schenck KH6CS
  • District 7 - Kaiser High School Parking Lot - Steve Levy NH7ZP, Carolyn Weeks-Levy WH6EAQ, Paul Nosal KF7NGK.
  • District 8 - Nanakuli Intermediate and High School Shelter Exercise - Zeph McNaughton N7WAP, Randy Kurashige AH6Q

Net Schedule:
Oahu HQ - KH6OCD
May 31, 9:00 - 12:00 - Mass Care EOC Drill. Participants: DEM, RACES, American Red Cross (ARC), Hawaiian Humane Society (HHS), Department of Education (DOE), Department of Parks and Recreation (DPR), Department of Transportation Services (DTS), Department of Health (DOH), & P52
June 1, 7:00 - DEM EOC Open.
June 1, 8:30 - Communications Test with Oahu EOC, send messages from shelters to Oahu EOC
June 1, 9:00 - Start of Makani Pahili Net DEM Participants: DEM, RACES, American Red Cross (ARC), Hawaiian Humane Society (HHS), Department of Parks and Recreation (DPR), Department of Transportation Services (DTS). Establish communications with shelters. Pass request for assistance from DEM to SCD via RACES.
June 1, 12:00 - End of Net operations

DEM will be on the following frequencies:

VHF/UHF

  • 146.88- DH Repeater - Command/Control
  • 146.82- DH Repeater
  • 146.76- Mokuleia Repeater - Linked with FFMB repeater
  • 146.98- PL 88.5 FFMB Repeater - Traffic
  • 146.55 Simplex
  • 146.58 Simplex
  • 444.325+ PL 103.5 Waimanalo Repeater - Traffic
  • 444.350+ PL 103.5 Diamond Head Repeater - Traffic

HF:
40m on 7098 kHz LSB.

DEM will be using FLDigi MT63-2K for VHF/UHF and 7098 LSB.

May 31 Mass Care EOC Drill Operators.

  • Chuck Oh N6NCT
  • Clem Jung KH7HO
  • Elsie Watanabe WH7BB
  • Jeff Sue AH6IX

June 1 Makani Pahili Net Operators. EOC open at 7:00 am.

  • Chuck Oh N6NCT
  • Jeff Sue AH6IX
  • Ralph Miranda WH7PD
  • Darrell Omuro KH6XL
  • Russell Houlton WH7F
  • Elsie Watanabe WH7BB

June 1 Makani Pahili Net Relay Station Tom Geier KH6BLA:

  • Tom Geier KH6BLA
  • Two operators
  • Frequencies 146.505 Simplex, 146.88-, 146.98- PL 88.5/444.350+ PL 103.5

Oahu District 4 (Windward) Shelters

May 21, 2013, updated May 23, 2013

Oahu District 4 (Windward) Shelters.

Net Schedule:
Start at 9:00 am, end at 12 noon.

Oahu District 4 Shelters will be on the following frequencies:

VHF/UHF:

  • 146.66- Olomana Repeater
  • 146.505 - District 4 Simplex - FLDigi MT63-2K.
  • 147.00+ PL 103.5 Windward Repeater - District 4 Traffic
  • 146.88- DH Repeater - Liaison with DEM RACES Command/Control
  • 146.98- FFMB Repeater - Liaison with DEM RACES Traffic
  • 444.175+ Portable Repeater - Voice only.
  • 444.325+ PL 103.5 Waimanalo Repeater

HF:

  • 40m on 7098 kHz LSB Primary. Voice/FLDigi MT63-2K.

Tentative list of shelters:

  • Waimanalo Elementary & Intermediate (Hub)
  • Kailua High (Hub)
  • Kalaheo High (Hub)
  • Castle High (Hub)
  • King Intermediate (Hub)
  • Enchanted Lake Elementary
  • Kailua Elementary
  • Keolu Elementary
  • Lanikai Elementary

Maui County

May 25, 2013

Maui County EOC will be participating in Makani Pahili using tactical call sign "Maui EOC". Maui EOC will be operating on the State RACES VHF Repeater system, the Maui Civil Defense Agency (MCDA) county wide repeater system and HF. New The EOC does not have digital messaging capability and is looking for an amateur radio operator with that capability.

The operators are: New

  • Melvin Fukunaga KH6H
  • Bill Heyde KH6UU
  • Kent Carlson KH6CJJ

Healthcomm

May 21, 2013

Statewide Hurricane Exercise - Healthcomm participation. TBD.

Call signs:
Healthcomm - KH6HC

147.280 - Hawaii Medical Center-West Repeater
443.775+ pl 123.0
443.825
444.775+ pl 123.0

Healthcomm will be on HF:
40m on 7080 kHz LSB (+/- qrm) Primary
60m on 5371.5 kHz USB (Channel 4) (+/- qrm) Alternate
80m on 3888 kHz LSB (if 40m is not open) Alternate

US Coast Guard

May 21, 2013

The US Coast Guard is reported to be participating in Makani Pahili. Details forthcoming.

SKYWARN Net, Sunday June 2, 2013, 1:00 - 3:00 pm

May 21, 2013

The National Weather Service Forecast Office in Honolulu will activate their SKYWARN amateur radio operations on Sunday, June 2, 2013 from 1:00 to 3:00 pm. Amateur radio stations and SKYWARN members are encouraged to check-in and pass their report. The report is their current location, and the real world weather report (ie, Kapolei, 82 degrees, Sunny and few clouds).

Operations will be on the SCD VHF RACES repeater network, and the linked All-STAR repeater network 146.76-, 146.98- PL 88.5, 444.325+ PL 103.5, 444.350+ PL 103.5.

Operations will also be on HF on 7.090 USB, FLDigi MT63-2K (default) and dropping to 1K as needed.

Makani Pahili Net, Wednesday June 5, 2013, 10:00 am - 2:00 pm

May 21, 2013, updated May 25 2013

State Civil Defense, Department of Emergency Management (DEM), and Kauai, Maui and Hawaii County EOCs will operate the Makani Pahili net on amateur radio frequencies on Wednesday, June 5, 2013 from 10:00 am to 2:00 pm. Amateur radio stations and RACES/ARES members are encouraged to check-in and pass their net traffic.

The traffic for the Wednesday net is post-landfall hurricane messages. Situation Reports (SITREPs), Status Reports, and request for assistance to both the SCD and DEM EOCs are typical traffic for this net.

Operations will be on the SCD VHF RACES repeater network, and the linked All-STAR repeater network 146.76-, 146.98- PL 88.5, 444.325+ PL 103.5, 444.350+ PL 103.5.

Between 11:05 am and 12:05 pm, there will be a simulated communications blackout except for amateur radio. SCD, Oahu, Kauai and Hawaii County EOCs will participate exchanging situation reports, status, resource requests, etc. Maui is evaluating the situation and arrangements. New Further details as it develops.

SCD Operators will be:

  • Ron Hashiro AH6RH
  • Kevin Bogan AH6QO
  • Clem Jung KH7HO
  • Peter Yuen KH6JBS

DEM Operators will be:

  • Jeff Sue AH6IX
  • Ralph Miranda WH7PD
  • Elsie Watanabe WH7BB

FLDigi Installation for Mac OSX

May 27, 2013 New

If you installed FLDigi and FLmsg on the Mac, you'll need to do this one modification in a Terminal Window in order to add a symbolic link to the hidden file folders and make it visible.

Reminder on Test Procedure - Kerchunking repeaters is illegal

May 20, 2013

A reminder to ALL stations - especially newly licensed stations - that when testing access and coverage with repeaters to clearly identify your transmissions with your callsign and the word "Test" or "Testing". Momentarily keying your radio to activate the repeater to cause it to transmit without saying anything (known as "kerchunking" a repeater) is an unidentified transmission. Unidentified transmissions are a violation of FCC Part 97.119(a) and is illegal. Do not kerchunk a repeater, even once.

If you kerchunk repeaters, do not be surprised when you receive a notice from the FCC regarding your operations.

The correct procedure is to key your microphone, identify your transmission with your callsign and the word "Test" at the same time as you are keying down, then release the PTT switch and listen. (Example: "KH6ABC Test.") As a courtesy, another station on frequency may acknowledge your test signal with a signal report (Example: "KH6ABC, you are loud and clear. KH6ZZZ.")

Again, NEVER kerchunk a repeater with an unidentified transmission.

After Action Reports

June 1, 2013, updated June 8, 2013 New

This section is compiled and adapted from the after-action reports submitted by the groups operating during the amateur radio portion of Makani Pahili 2013, adjusting mainly for consistency in formatting and reporting.

This report is work-in-progress.

The agencies served or simulated were: Hawaii State Civil Defense, Department of Emergency Management (Oahu), Hawaii Civil Defense, Maui Civil Defense, DEM District 4, Healthcomm, US Coast Guard Auxiliary. Stations listed as exchanging ICS-213 messages are underscored.

Summary Statistics
Agency
Nets/Frequencies
Operators
Check-ins
Voice Messages Passed
FLDigi Messages Passed
Comment
Hawaii SCD
2
2
38
9
18 New
DEM
DEM District IV-Windward Oahu
5
17
17
44 New
Hawaii Civil Defense
Maui Civil Defense
Healthcomm
US Coast Guard Auxiliary
Kauai County
1
1
7
3
Total Reported
8
20
62
9
65

State Civil Defense, submitted by Ron Hashiro AH6RH

The SCD operations at the SCD EOC in Diamond Head crater ran from 9:00 am to 12 noon. HF operator was Ron Hashiro AH6RH. VHF 147.06 operator was Kevin Bogan AH6QO.

The Level 1 Net on 147.02/147.04/147.06 MHz had 26 check-ins, handled two inbound voice ICS-213 and four inbound FLDigi ICS-213 messages. One message was relayed from Maui on 7088 kHz to Maui EOC on 147.02 MHz. Stations checking in were: NH6AR, KC7ASJ, KH6CN, KH6CQ, WH6DIW, KH6DM/M, WH6DWF, WH6DWM, WH6DSL, WH6ECG, KH7FX, KH6H, KH6HHG, NH7JH, KJ4HUH, AH6KO, WH7MW, NH7PE, KH7T, KH6TG, WH7XA, WH7XO, WH6ZI, NH7YS, NH7ZD, KN6ZU.

The Level 2 Net on 7088 kHz had nineteen check-ins, handled four inbound voice, nine inbound FLDigi, three outbound voice and five outbound FLDigi messages. One message was relayed from Maui on 7088 kHz to Maui EOC on 147.02 MHz. Stations checking in were: KH6AUX, AH6CP, KH6CS, KH6DQ, N0DQD, WH6EAL, KH6HHG, KH7HO, AH6JA, KF7NGK, KH6OCD, NH7PE, KH7T, KH6WM, AH6WX, NH7XA, NH6Y, NH7YS.

One message was received via WINLINK packet-to-email system.

What worked well

  • The throughput of the FLDigi messages were higher than the voice traffic. The operator was able to update the manual logs while the inbound FLDigi messages were received by the PC.
  • ICS 213 messages received via FLDigi and FLmsg appeared as tabs within the Firefox web browser. The text was copied into Outlook Web Access.
  • On 40 meter HF, AH6JA Hilo EOC was able to copy and confirm receipt of every FLDigi message exchanged on the State CD EOC net, demonstrating that all islands could copy the same message simultaneously with FLDigi and NVIS.
  • Use of All-Star and VOIP continues to work well for the SCD VHF and UHF RACES Repeater networks
  • The link to the Mauna Loa 147.04 MHz repeater operated well during this exercise.
  • Stations with a PC or a Mac could try out monitoring the FLDigi traffic by loading the software and placing the PC/Mac microphone near the speaker of the radio. No extra hardware was needed. Stations using the optional Tigertronics Signalink USB, especially the SLUSB6PM - For 6-pin mini DIN Data / Accessory Port Connector, reported very effective and easy operations.

What needs improvement

  • HF propagation from 9:00 am to about 9:45 am was very poor. Propagation picked up afterwards. Spaceweather.com reports "GEOMAGNETIC STORM, SUBSIDING: Earth's magnetic field is calming down on June 1st following nearly 15 hours of non-stop geomagnetic storming. The storminess was caused by the arrival of an interplanetary shock wave on May 31st (1618 UT). The source of the shock is unknown. Current speculation focuses on a corotating interaction region (CIR)--that is, a shock-like transition zone between high- and low-speed solar wind streams. Whatever it was, the impact ignited some beautiful auroras. More storms could be in the offing tonight as the solar wind continues to blow faster than 600 km/s." Planetary Kp, X-ray Flux, Solar data.
  • More stations need to be ready to move to 60 meters (5330.5 USB), 80 meters (3993.5 LSB), and 160 meters (1870 LSB), should conditions warrant 60 meter operations. Stations should also be ready to move to 1296 MHz operations should HF conditions prove unusable and VHF/UHF repeaters are unavailable.
  • The workflow for receiving messages into email needs to be reviewed and improved for higher throughput. Overall message delivery time was still faster than copying a voice ICS-213 message.
  • The messages exchanged during the exercise that contained only status information could be upgraded to include at least one actionable request. This enables the recipient of the message the opportunity to craft a response that makes sense and is alignment with the status information.
  • New operators could be trained to pass voice messages and practiced before participating in the exercise. Operators were able to learn on the spot and adapt the pace of the voice message.
  • Voice operators on HF need to check their RIT settings to ensure that the transmit and receive frequency are the same.
  • Voice operators should check their station's transmit audio quality before the net to ensure that the proper ALC and compressor settings are in place to ensure maximum readability of voiced messages.
  • Having additional skilled troubleshooting operators available to take stations with equipment or software problems to a different frequency for troubleshooting and resolution would be very helpful to expedite net traffic during exercises and real emergencies.

Comments

  • SCD RACES acknowledges the pioneering work of Bart KH7C, Jack KH6DQ and Jeff AH6IX of bringing forth FLDigi as an effective tool for ICS-213 message handling. Clem KH7HO worked tirelessly in advance of MP 2013 to prepare the Windward Oahu DEM District 4 operators to develop their FLDigi capabilities and skills.
  • NH6Y suggested the use of FLDigi as an efficient means to pass net bulletins. That will be incorporated in future exercises and events.
Tom NH6Y further commented after the exercise:

I thought that many parts of the exercise went quite well.

Especially considering that it was the first time, the digital message passing went quite well. I was impressed with the ability of M63 to handle poor HF conditions and interference from breaking stations on HF. I am also impressed with its ease of operation on VHF, you really can just stand an HT in front of a laptop and make work. Clearly it is much faster and more accurate than passing messages by voice. The add on program FLmsg makes it easy to pull everything together although that program could do better job of labeling the wrap files with either call sign or subject to make it easier to find the files.

HF propagation was a real problem, especially at the beginning of the net, and it wasn't so long ago, during the sunspot minimum, when it might have been much worse. Perhaps the simplest improvement would be for SCD to get a linear amplifier. There have been a number of days in the last couple months when the 9 am 7.188 net was only useable by folks with amplifiers and good NVIS antennas. It is especially important that CD be heard by everybody and 10 dB really does make a difference.

A better way is to use a different frequency. The problem is that you may not know the best frequency to use and it may be different for communication to different locations.

Also not all stations may have 80m antennas. One way to solve that problem is to use two radios transmitting on two different bands at the same time. If SCD has a single antenna that is 50 Ohms on both 7.088 MHz and 3.888 MHz, (for example) you can connect two radios to the antenna using a Dunestar diplexer and band pass filters. Then you can transmit simultaneously on both frequencies. The receiving stations then respond on the frequency they hear best. It take some discipline on the part of the receiving stations not to break in, and stereo headphone at SCD but it does work. I installed such a system when I was in Bangladesh a couple of years ago working on the Cyclone Preparedness Program's radio network. The system that Dunestar sells is designed to operate contests with three radios sharing a tribander, but they made up a 80/40 diplexer for me that worked just fine.

In the real world, after a disaster, the problem will be in putting up antennas that work. That is something that many operators do not practice. It is likely that to be useful, amateur radio operators need the equipment and ability to go to a new location and set up an antenna to provide the needed communication. It was only a few years ago when the only frequencies that provided interisland communication after as early as 7 pm were on 160m! And there were several years when I could not get into the 9 am 7.188 Net at all. I have no idea how to get amateurs to practice this kind of thing.

Thanks for running the drill. 73 and Aloha, Tom Worthington, NH6Y

DEM RACES

DEM EOC

What Worked Well

What could be improved

DEM District 4 - Windward Oahu New

Windward Oahu, referred to as Honolulu Police Department (HPD) District 4, consists of the area stretching from Makapuu to Kahuku. The organization focus in this report is the Amateur Radio Service which consists of "volunteers" who set up their own equipment in various shelters and communities. Amateur radio operators practiced their skills to maintain communication lines to the Hawaii State Civil Defense (SCD) and the Oahu Department of Emergency Management (DEM) from various "shelters" or community centers.

STAFFING OF WINDWARD NET CONTROL consists of KH6OM, Richard Kimitsuka, and KH6U, Doug Morgan. Using the scenario as provide by AH6RH, Ron Hashiro, a script was created following the 3 hour time frame compressing the major events and its effect on the communication infrastructure collapse and Amateur Radio's efforts to begin, maintain, and communicate information to the local Windward Community, Honolulu, and Hawaii Kai areas with SCD EOC and DEM EOC.

The scenario was broken up into segments of time assigned to information capsules labeled as Alpha, Bravo continuing on to Foxtrot which closed the simulation at 12:00 P.M.

Site Names, amateur radio operators assigned to them and their resources was placed on a large sheet of paper taped to the wall thus enabling Net Control Stations to have a visual picture at any time of the present status of the varied sites, their ham operators, communication resources, and any changes therein.

KH6OM, "Rick", acted as the Windward Net Control Station and KH6U, "Doug", acted as "logger, site status resource manager, and operation's advisor.

Equipment at KH6OM pertinent to the exercise included redundant equipment in emergency power management, VHF, UHF, HF, lap top computers, antennas, digital recorder, the DEM portable repeater at 444.175 MHz, etc.

Organizational efforts included a review of the Makani Pahili 2012, Simulated Emergency Test October, 2012 and incorporation of suggestions into Makani Pahili 2013. An organizational time line was created and upon it was a script developed to formalize exercises used in the exercise. The script was in place on one laptop and was changed as needed before and during the exercise. The FLDigi and the FLmsg was placed on a second laptop to play a part in the digital portion of the exercise.

At 0900 HST, the net preamble was read, noting the beginning of the Hurricane simulation, identifying "Rick" and "Doug" as dual WINDWARD NET CONTROL of the exercise.

Participating stations were called by local area beginning with Hauula, and continuing to Kaneohe, Waimanalo, Kailua, Hawaii Kai, and Honolulu. The following table illustrates location, personnel, and their resources.

PARTICIPANTS in order of check in: Rick KH6OM, Doug KH6U, Tony WH6PS, Larry WH7DWM, Henry WH6P, Austin WH6ECJ, Keith WH7GG, Lovell AH6LL, Dave WH6DSL, Tiff AH6S, Clem KH7HO, Steve NH7ZP, Carolyn WH6EAQ, Paul KF7NGK, Tom KH6BLA, Elsie WH7BB, Evan WH6ECG; total of 17 participants.

District 4 Station Information
Call
Tactical Call
Location
Resources
KH6OM, KH6U Windward Net Kailua Heights VHF, UHF, HF, 2nd VHF, FLDigi, DEM Portable Repeater
WH6PS, WH6DWM Hauula EMCOMM Hauula VHF,UHF,HF, FLDigi
WH6P King Intermedia Shelter Kaneohe VHF,UHF, FLDigi
WH6ECJ Castle Shelter Kaneohe VHF, UHF, FLDigi
WH6GG, AH6LL Waimanalo Int Shelter Waimalalo VHF, UHF, FLDigi, 2nd VHF
WH6DSL Kalaheo High Shelter Kailua VHF, UHF, 2nd VHF/UHF FLDigi
AH6S, KH7HO Kailua High Shelter Kailua VHF, UHF, HF, 2nd VHF/UHF, FLDigi
NH7ZP, WH6EAQ, KF7NGK Kaiser High Shelter Hawaii Kai VHF, UHF, HF, 2nd VHF, FLDigi
KH6BLA, WH7BB Honolulu Relay Waikiki VHF, UHF, FLDigi
WH6ECG Bellows Beach Park Waimanalo VHF, UHF

The following write up details the exercises which the Windward Net Control team and the amateur radio operators performed:

District 4 Exercise Information
Bulletin/Exercise
Information/Exercise
ALPHA - 9:00 A.M.;10 minute time frame Announcement: Makani Pahili 2013, Preamble read, and check-ins taken on 147.00 MHz repeater.
EXERCISE #1 All stations were encouraged to write the list of check-ins in case Net Control was disabled. All stations were assigned tactical call signs and instructed to use their F.C.C. assigned calls as required.
BRAVO - 9:10 A.M.; 35 minute time frame Winds at 20 MPH, residents seeking shelter. Windward Net Control asked each TACTICAL site what their resources were (refer to above table for results).
CHARLIE - 9:45 A.M.; 30 minute time frame High winds to 75 MPH with higher gusts to 111 MPH; extensive damage to communication infrastructure; all REPEATERS are down.
EXERCISE #2 Windward Net Control transmits on 147.00 MHz simplex (the output frequency of the repeater). Net Control cycles through the check-ins via repeater to see if all can hear Net Control. All sites can hear Windward Net Control on simplex.
EXERCISE #3

Net Control directs all stations to change frequency to 146.505 Mhz. As Net Control calls each site, operators respond by counting 0 to 10. All sites are instructed to write down which sites they can hear well enough to pass messages.

All sites are surveyed again to report all stations that they could clearly hear. Net control asks each site to make copies of all information with the backup function of using direct contact or relays to pass information to the EOC's.

RESULTS show that ALL sites via direct or relay can communicate messages to both EOC's.

DELTA - 10:15 A.M.; 1 Hour and 35 minutes time frame
EXERCISE #4 Net Control demonstrates the handling of TACTICAL information.
EXERCISE #5

Net Control asks each site to write a tactical message. Net Control assigns each PAIR of stations to different frequencies and asks them to pass the message to each other.

Frequency assignments included 146.660 MHz repeater, 444.175 MHz repeater, 147.000 MHz repeater, 146.505 MHz simplex, 146.580 MHz simplex. This exercise not only included message handling, but also the ability to move to an assigned frequency easily.

EXERCISE #6

Formal message handling utilizing IC213 form and FLDigi Mode.

Net Control creates and sends a formal IC213 message utilizing FLDigi. Each site is asked if they received the message including HTML format.

Stations were assigned to send FLDigi messages and Net Control asked all sites if they received the message, if was complete, including the Pop Ups.

EXERCISE #7

Sending formal messages to other EOC's via repeaters or relay.

All sites were asked to set up an FLDigi and / or voice message and to use any of their resources to get the message either to State EOC and/or to Oahu EOC. Problem solving was transferred to the various sites so their amateur radio operators could pass the message to the various EOC's. Windward Net Control would monitor 147.000 MHz repeater.

Results were gratifying as most succeeded in getting their messages to the EOC's using their resources.

EXERCISE #8

Collection of statistics: KH6OM collected the following information from each site.

  1. Number of messages handled.
  2. What worked.
  3. What didn't work.
  4. A suggestion for improvement.
ECHO 15 Minutes - Collection of statistics

Net control began ECHO early to facilitate information gathering. All statistics and suggestions collected by 11:50 A.M. Windward Net Control Stations KH6OM and KH6U expressed their thanks for all participants.

FOXTROT - 12:00 P.M. Close of Makani Pahili 2013
1. Number of messages handled by stations
Tactical Call
Number of Messages
Notes
Bellows
9
Castle High
?
Left early
King Inter
13
* (30) * Misinterpreted request
Waimanalo
9
Kalaheo High
9
Left early
Kailua High
12
Kaiser High
13
Honolulu Relay
6
Hauula EMCOM
2
Left early
Windward Net
14
Total
82

2. What Worked? As collected by survey; many similar comments:

  1. Repeaters including DEM portable worked well
  2. Simplex to Net Control worked 100%
  3. All sites could hear at least 2 other simplex stations
  4. Organization of Exercises into functional units helped keep everyone on task with minimum misunderstanding
  5. Clarification of how to handle a tactical message properly valuable.
  6. Net moved smoothly from exercise to exercise.
  7. Net closed 10 minutes before 12:00 P.M.
  8. Crucial to the operation of Windward Net Control was having TWO experienced amateur radio operators. Team work with KH6U and KH6OM made it happened with maximum organization, coordination, and problem solving.
  9. Review of the logs / materials from Makani Pahili 2012 and the SET October 5, 2012 incorporated changes and improvement to organizing Makani Pahili 2013.

3. What didn't work.

  1. Not all sites could hear each other on simplex exercise.
  2. One site was noisy into 147.00 MHz repeater, but copyable.
  3. Some sites had equipment failures. i.e. battery, computer software failures.
  4. Not all FLDigi transmissions were received 100 % with pop ups (html.); some FLDigi transmissions were not copied at all by several sites.
  5. Some sites closed early, message numbers were not collected.
  6. On occasion, instructions from Windward Net Control were not understood clearly.

4. Suggestions:

  1. More training exercises especially with deployed equipment.
  2. More frequent training.
  3. Laminated frequency charts sent to all participants.

Message Statistics below are best estimates, some site operators had to close down early and their message count was not available.

COLLECTIVE STATISTICS - log of KH6U (Doug Morgan) The statistics are as follows.

  • Duration of the event: 3 hours
  • Number of Amateurs involved in the exercise: 17
  • Number of sites where stations were set up: 10
  • Estimated number of messages handled in total: 82

Written log of KH6U is being kept for future reference and improvement of subsequent nets. Log is available for viewing by contacting KH6OM and making proper arrangements. Originals shall remain the property of KH6OM.

This document is not copyrighted and may be disseminated in the hopes of encouraging other amateur radio operators to participate in future training exercises. By the nature of the training exercise, mistakes were made and lessons were learned by all. Credit goes to all who participated in the exercise including all participating "hams" across the state of Hawaii. KH6OM "Rick"

Kauai County

Tad NH7YS reports the following activity for Kauai County.

Net operations from 11:00 am to 12:04 pm. Stations checked in: WH6DZP, KH6JMM, AH6TA, KH6TWA, NH7TZ, WH7XA, NH7YS. AH6TA transmitted an FLDigi ICS-213 message. Stations copying were WH6DZP, NH7TZ, WH7XA, NH7YS. WH7XA, NH7YS transmitted an ICS-213 message back to AH6TA

Comments

Tad NH7YS commented:

Aloha Everyone!

Excellent operation this morning with Makani Pahili. I enjoy these exercises as it always reveals areas which I need to improve on!

On Kauai, we ran a Makani Pahili exercise net from 11:00 AM to 12 noon, as some of the amateurs cannot access the Lihue RACES or Peacock Flats repeater. Attached is the log for our local net. Elaine Albertson, AH6TA, served as net control.

Thank you for all your hard work in putting on the exercise today. Your efforts do much to increase our capacity in responding to communication emergencies. Your work does make a difference!

Mahalo, Tad, NH7YS

SKYWARN Net

The results of the Sunday Makani Pahili 2013 SKYWARN net

  • Net was from 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m.
  • 21 total check-ins with weather reports
  • 3 of the 21 reports were FLDigi
  • No HF reports received. Several HF stations could hear us but we could not hear or receive FLDigi messages

The following Hams were at the NWS Skywarn Ham station, KH6SW:

  • Jack Tsujimura (KH6DQ), State Skywarn Deputy Ham Coordinator & Quick Response Team (QRT) Member
  • Bart Aronoff (KH7C), QRT Member
  • Clem Jung (KH7HO), State Skywarn Ham Coordinator

Wednesday EOC Net

The results of the Wednesday Makani Pahili 2013 EOC net

  • Net was from 10:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. The simulated EOC-to-EOC traffic with Hilo was from 10:00 am to 12:00 noon. The simulated EOC-to-EOC traffic with the other EOCs was from 11:00 am to 12:00 noon.
  • Kauai, Oahu, Hilo and State EOC were manned. Maui EOC was simulated during the net period.
  • Eight inbound and two outbound EOC messages were exchanged at State EOC during the EOC traffic time.
  • Twelve inbound and six outbound EOC messages were exchanged at State EOC during the net.
  • Eleven messages were FLDigi messages.
  • Hilo EOC exchanged messages with Kauai EOC.

The net was a part of an exercise of the end-to-end workflow. The results and discoveries will be used to evaluate and improve the workflow.

Find out more by contacting:  rhashiro(remove this part)@hawaiiantel.net
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May 27, 2013, updated June 9, 2013

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