The meeting was called to order on May 4, 2008 with 17 members and guests present.
MINUTES: Motion to accept the April minutes by Edgar (KC8VLV), seconded by Dan (KD8CFF) approved.
DISASTER REPORT: There Red Cross responded to Capac for support after a shooting of two police officers was committed by a motorist after a brief chase. ARCARS was not called out for that event.
On Friday May 2nd, ARCARS was called out for evacuation support following a truck roll over that resulted in spilling hydrogenous ammonia on the expressway. 500 residents were evacuated from the surrounding area. Four ARCARS responded in person after Edgar called a net. Other members were standing by in case the situation escalated.
Andrew (KC8SPD) recommended that we implement a new response procedure using a flow chart to contact members when a ARCARS call out is needed. This would ensure that key members are alerted of the situation, then the members can be contacted to respond. It is recommended that radio communications between the Chapter House net control and responders on the scene be moved off the repeater to simplex frequencies. The official County simplex frequency is 146.580MHz. It was observed that a field packet station deployment would be needed to convey relief information.
NET REPORT: Edgar (KC8VLV) noted that net participation steady with average of 12 amateurs checking in since moving net operations to the club house location. He has introduced several interesting topics during the recent nets. If you have any topics that you would like to include, contact Edgar. Please make note to participate Tuesday evenings at 8pm, on 146.800MHz.
SPECIAL EVENTS: Dayton Hamvention 2008 May 16, 17, & 18, 2008. Information can be found at www.hamvention.org/
CLUB STATION: The Command Center's antenna was disconnected and at present time is fitted with a magnet mount antenna until new coax can be installed. Everything else is operational and awaiting for our planned renovation.
NEWSLETTER: Our newsletter and web page is available at www.qsl.net/arcars, www.bandopening.org/arcars. Other related information can be found at www.arcars.org. The mobile version of the website has been discontinued. If you have any information you would like posted on the website, contact Mark (N8EGJ). We have a wealth of archived information available on the website as well as on the RSS feed.
CLUB PROJECT: The discussion centered around Field Day operations and preparations.
FIELD DAY: Field Day is held June 28th and 29th. We will have the event at the St. Clair County Park in Goodells. (park information available at http://www.stclaircountyparks.org. We will be able to use the park from Thursday to Sunday. We are planning to have three stations available for operations. CW will he sheltered in the new truck, ssb voice will be sheltered in the big blue military truck, and 2 meter / 6 meter (if deployed) will be housed in the communications trailer. Members have committed to supplying the necessary generators. We are planning to set up camp on Thursday, tower and station set up is scheduled for 2pm Friday. The event ends Sunday at 2pm followed with tear down and clean up. We have a request made for 10 picnic tables and 5 trash barrels. We are planning a pot luck dinner for Friday evening.
OLD BUSINESS: Paul (KG8OU) currently has the old communication trailer and would like to transfer it to another member.
NEW BUSINESS: A project involving a portable/ deploy-able IVR-Tower-and generator combination likely to be mounted on a truck and trailer is being considered to be used at disaster areas. NA8I and KC8SPD are currently working on this project.
DX SPOTS/ SPECIAL EVENTS: Tom (W8TRC) reported that the Solar Flux is very low at 67, and the A and K have been relatively high. This equates to poor HF conditions. The good news is that indications show that Solar Cycle 23 has ended and Solar Cycle 24 has begun. Better conditions are anticipated soon.
IMPORTANT UPDATE: Mike (AA8K) provided information regarding the status of the 147.320 county emergency amateur repeater. The existing tower, antennas, and feed lines have been purchased and will soon be removed from service. The amateur repeater and digipeater will be returned to their owners. A new location plan is being considered for the repeater as well as digipeaters operating in 144MHz, 220MHz, and 440MHz . The exact operating frequencies have not been determined. The project is up for bid as a grant and once the bidding is completed the equipment will be ordered. There was also information indicating combining amateur radio assistance with the new 800MHz radio systems recently deployed by the County.
MOTION TO ADJOURN: by Jeri (KC8YRQ) seconded by Angela (KD8HMS)
ANNOUNCEMENTS and other info:
RED CROSS VOLUNTEER DINNER will be held May 16th beginning at 6pm $10 per person. Contact the Chapter House if you intend to attend 985-7117.
The ARCARS & International Traders Net is held every Tuesday evening at 8pm on the 146.800 NA8I repeater.
The International Friendship Net is held every Thursday at 9pm on the 145.370-VA3SAR repeater
The Thumb / Mid Michigan Nets are held Monday through Saturday at 9:30pm on the 147.300 repeater.
HF: The Great Lakes Emergency and Traffic Net is held nightly at 8pm on 3.932 kHz
The AC8W DX Cluster on 144.790 MHz is available. Check it for HF activity.
Swap list provided by Frank (VE3FBH)