GAREC 2013 to Explore Need for Amateur Radio Emergency Communication in Europe
The 2013 Global Amateur Radio Emergency Communication Conference GAREC 2013 takes place in Zurich, Switzerland, June 25-27. Among the topics on the agenda is whether Amateur Radio Emergency Communication is needed in the middle of Europe. “We often hear this question when speaking with government delegations or authorities,” says IARU Region 1 Liaison Officer and GAREC 2013 Coordinator Stefan Streif, HB9TTQ, in an introductory statement on the conference website. He says most believe that the “First World” infrastructure is robust and the technical level so high that a disaster could not affect a wide area. Streif concedes that such a disaster would be very rare in the middle of Europe; only a long-term power blackout could be considered a widespread disaster. Streif says Europe would need other emergency communication systems, as a result. “Often we require a local area emergency network for our communication. We also need communication with high data transfer rates to unaffected parts of the country.” Accomplishing these ends and related technical solutions will be up for discussion at GAREC 2013. The conference will be combined this year with the Swiss Convention of Amateur Radio Emergency Communication on June 27.