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ARRL General Bulletin ARLB022 (2001)

ARLB022 Texas, Louisiana Hams Wade in to Help in Allison's Wake

QST de W1AW  
ARRL Bulletin 22  ARLB022
From ARRL Headquarters  
Newington CT  June 12, 2001
To all radio amateurs 

ARLB022 Texas, Louisiana Hams Wade in to Help in Allison's Wake

Amateur Radio operators in Texas and Louisiana continue to provide
emergency communication for flood-stricken areas. Flood waters
generated over the weekend by Tropical Storm Allison are receding.
The flooding has claimed more than a dozen lives.

An FCC-declared general communications emergency requires amateurs
to refrain from using 7285 kHz during the day and 3873 kHz after
dark, plus or minus 3 kHz, unless they are taking part in the
handling of emergency traffic. The order remains effective until
rescinded. Hams also were active on VHF and UHF providing emergency
communication and helping to coordinate relief activities.

In Texas, telephone service was lost in most of downtown area of
Houston, including the medical center. Bruce Paige, KK5DO, in
Houston, said hospitals not only were without telephone service but
water and power, as basements containing emergency generators
flooded. At one point, he said, ham radio was a communication
mainstay for the city.

Hams were stationed at local Houston Fire Department stations on
Saturday when the department lost its dispatching system. Hams were
helping to direct emergency calls for service to the station
best-equipped to handle the call.

Hams also were linking local Red Cross shelters housing those
displaced by the flooding to Red Cross headquarters, as well as
emergency operations centers. Some 10,000 people were in shelters.

Amateur Radio also continue to handle health-and-welfare messages
from the affected area to the outside.

ARRL South Texas Section Manager Ray Taylor, N5NAV, said radio
amateurs were helping Southwestern Bell employees to communicate
with each other as they reinstalled a telephone trunk line in
Houston that was shut down because of the flooding.

In Louisiana, East Baton Rouge Parish EC Karl R. Sandstrom, K5MAN,
reports that ARES and RACES were activated June 7 to assist the Red
Cross in the Baton Rouge area following upwards of two feet of rain
during the weekend.

The Red Cross opened two shelters in Baton Rouge and one in Denham
Springs, both staffed by local hams. The national American Red Cross
on Saturday established a command center to coordinate activities in
East Baton Rouge Parish. Shelters were expected to remain open this

The Salvation Army Team Emergency Network's Jerry Jennison, N5OKQ,
reported that SATERN operators were providing communication for five
primary Salvation Army service locations in Houston.


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