Basic Requirements of Volunteers
To be a RACES operator you must:
- Be a United States Citizen
- Hold a valid Amateur Radio License of any class*
- Register with a RACES Unit
* Technician class or higher is recommended,
since Novices have limited voice privilege, but Novices may
still join and assist a Unit.
RACES Units are equal opportunity
"employers" and a place can normally be found for anyone,
including those with physical limitations.
In Hudson County, you may register to serve with
either a municipal RACES unit or the County RACES Unit (County Staff).
- To register with a municipal unit, contact the Radio
Officer in your municipality. If there is no officer or you can not contact him or her,
the County Radio Officer by email.
- Volunteers with the County Staff generally first
get experience with a municipal RACES unit or an ARES unit. If you would like to
apply for the County RACES Unit, contact the County Radio Officer as
above, but you are encouraged to first discuss the idea with your
municipal Radio Officer.
RACES members responsibilities:
From FEMA's "Guidance for RACES"
"(1) Participate in the training sessions;
(2) Brief the RACES Officer of any changes in equipment or amateur status that may affect operation in the RACES program;
(3) Develop a strong background in emergency procedures, FCC Rules and Regulations, and network procedures;
(4) Be available when emergency communications are required by the appointing Director;
(5) Help strengthen the organization by offering suggestions and positive feedback to correct deficiencies;
(6) Comply with volunteer standards established by the jurisdiction; and,
(7) Notify the RACES Officer, in writing, when terminating membership"
More specifically, Hudson County RACES members are
- Regularly attend your Unit's scheduled meetings.
Many Units meet on the last Monday of the month, the night the
County RACES "Net" is held.
- Listen to the the monthly RACES net on at 8 pm on the
last Monday of the month, either at a meeting, at home, or in your
- Participate in drills and exercises -- your
Unit's and the County's .
- Attend any special meetings that may be called
-- your Unit's or the County's.
- Listen to both your Unit's & the County's
pre-established call-up frequencies during times of heightened risk,
e.g. severe storms.
- Make yourself available anytime there is an actual
need for operators!
- Improve your radio operating skills and
- Increase your knowledge of both amateur radio
and emergency operations
- Maintain a well-stocked and working inventory of personal
For specific suggestions to increase your
capabilities, see either the RACES library or
general library. The
sections on Operating Hints, Incident Command System, Ready Kits, and
Training may be of particular interest to RACES operators.