Massachusetts ARES Prepares as a Now-Weakened Hurricane Earl Approaches
Robert Macedo, KD1CY, ARES SKYWARN Coordinator and Eastern Massachusetts ARES Section Emergency Coordinator, provided this report on the afternoon of Friday, September 3:
The following is a situation report from the Eastern Massachusetts ARRL Section on Hurricane Earl. The good news is that Earl has weakened to a Category-1 hurricane. The other good news is that its track remains on target with Earl passing anywhere between Nantucket Island and the 40 North/70 West benchmark. It is likely that the worst case scenario is for a brief period of hurricane force conditions sustained or in gusts over Outer Cape Cod and Nantucket Island and “moderate nor'easter” conditions over Southeast Massachusetts.
Eastern Massachusetts ARES was placed on “standby” alert status across the entire section starting at 7 AM September 3 lasting until Saturday evening or until rescinded. Cape Cod ARES is in full activation mode at this time. The following is a breakdown of activities occurring so far in our section:
1) WX1BOX, NWS Taunton SKYWARN Operations activated at 1 PM ET Friday. We expect to be active through the overnight hours into Saturday morning for reports of rainfall, river/stream/urban and coastal flooding and measured wind and wind damage reports. WX4NHC is expected to activate at 5 PM ET for the impact of Hurricane Earl on our region. That could change depending on the status of the system through the evening hours.
2) WC1MA, the Massachusetts State Emergency Operations Center in Framingham, WC1MAA, Region 1 Tewksbury office and WC1MAB, Region 2 Tewksbury office are all active with RACES operations. This is through the efforts of Massachusetts State RACES Radio Officer Tom Kinahan, N1CPE, for the State EOC in Framingham; Terry Stader, KA8SCP, at MEMA Region 1 Tewksbury, and Bob Mims, WA1OEZ, and John Miller, N1UMJ, at MEMA Region 2 Bridgewater.
3) Cape Cod ARES is fully staffing numerous EOCs on Cape Cod and Nantucket Island including the Red Cross Chapter in Hyannis, Massachusetts, the Nantucket Island EOC and several regional shelters. SKYWARN operations will be intertwined with ARES operations on Cape Cod.
4) I have received one request for possible shelter/damage assessment operations from Northeast Red Cross Chapter through Dave Belsky, K1DBB. Assistant ARES Section Emergency Coordinator Jim Palmer, KB1KQW, and North Shore ARES District Emergency Coordinator Eric Horwitz, KA1NCF, have responded.
5) We have 26 amateurs available to support operations within our section who are unassigned and on standby. We have 9 amateurs assigned to various EOCs/shelters outside of Cape Cod and Nantucket Island in Southeast Massachusetts. We have approximately three dozen amateurs deployed on various duties for Cape Cod ARES/SKYWARN work. Outside of Cape Cod, the numbers do not include SKYWARN Amateur Radio operators who are assisting.
6) We have received offers of ARESMAT support from the Western Massachusetts section and the Connecticut section. We appreciate their support but all needs are being fulfilled at this time.
We will be monitoring 3943 kHz LSB later this evening and we are currently monitoring the EchoLink *NEW-ENG* Node: 9123/IRLP 9123 system where we will be conducting operations along with local 2 meter/440 MHz repeaters.