Local ham radio club participates in national event

Fun and games – but braced for catastrophe – with HAM radio operators in Pointe-Claire

Their slogan, "When All Else Fails, Ham Radio Works" is more than just words to the hams as they prove they can send messages in many forms without the use of phone systems, internet or any other infrastructure that can be compromised in a crisis.

The Key City Amateur Radio Club is able to access city and state governments and the National Weather Service during emergency situations.

Tom Williams, a member of the Portsmouth Amateur Radio Club, says that what he enjoys most about the club is the camaraderie and the fellowship.

"During Hurricane Katrina, there was no power available for many, many days and through using generators and ham radio that was the only communication means they had in Hurricane Katrina".

Tim Ramsey, another ham and club member, said he likes Morse because "it's crisp and there's never any static". When trouble is brewing, Amateur Radio's people are often the first to provide rescuers with critical information and communications.


"You contact them on the air, you exchange signal reports", said Rocker, "Then you get a confirmation".

Saturday is what the organization calls 'Field Day'.

"It's going really well", said club president Derek Hawk, "by about midnight we'd made a contact with every state in the USA, and we've made 575 total contacts so far".

"I've had my license since I was 13", said Beth Kistler, 30, an Olney middle school teacher, and Christovich's daughter, who was assisting with the event that is open to the public and ends at 2 p.m. Sunday.

Amiable and outgoing, Christovich should know because over the years he's been in the hobby he has connected with hams in more than 200 countries.

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