Northwest Mississippi
Amateur Radio Emergency Service

"Organized amateur radio communications for the benefit of your community."

What do Amateur Radio operators ("hams") do during and after disasters?

Amateur Radio operators set up and operate organized communication networks locally for governmental and emergency officials, as well as non-commercial communication for private citizens affected by the disaster. Hams are most likely to be active after disasters that damage regular lines of communication, i.e. power outages and destruction of telephone lines.

How do Amateur Radio operators help local officials?

Many hams are active as communications volunteers with local public safety organizations. In addition, in some disasters, radio frequencies are not coordinated among relief officials, and hams step in to coordinate communication when radio towers and other elements in the communications infrastructure are damaged.

What are the major Amateur Radio emergency organizations?

Amateur Radio operators have informal and formal groups to coordinate communication during emergencies. At the local level, hams may participate in local emergency organizations, or organize local "traffic nets" using VHF and UHF frequencies. At the state level, hams are often involved with state emergency management operations. In addition, hams operate at the national level through the Radio Amateur Civil Emergency Service (RACES) which is coordinated through the Federal Emergency Management Agency

Is Amateur Radio recognized as a resource by national relief organizations?

Many national organizations have formal agreements with the Amateur Radio Emergency Service (ARES), including:

DeSoto County Emergency Training and Information Net
Meets Monday evenings at 0130 UTC on
the CARA's W5GWD 146.91/31 repeater

ARES/RACES meetings for the Northwest Mississippi area are at 17:00 UTC at the Olive Branch Library every third Saturday of each month.

The following HF nets have been designated by ARRL Section Leadership
officials as primary traffic outlets during section-wide emergencies.

Net Name Freq. (kHz) Regular Meeting UTC Time Manager
Magnolia Section Net 3862.5 Monday - Friday
Saturday -Sunday
Mississippi Section Phone Net 3862 Daily 0000 N5JCG
Mississippi Traffic Net 3665 Daily 0045 KB5W

Add your ARES net to the list
send e-mail to
and register with the Section Manager
Malcolm Keown, W5XX and ARRL Headquarters.

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