Natural Disaster Communications through Amateur RadioHave you ever wondered what your life might look like ten minutes after a major natural disaster? Most of us have flashlights at home. Some might have extra food and water on hand. The rest cross their fingers or call 911 if things get really bad.
Few consider that after a real disaster, 911 might not be an option. Your home phone line might be dead. Your fully charged cell phone dials – no one, actually.
Because networks have been impacted, you can't get a signal. No email, no texting, no one knows you're in trouble. And you have no idea when service might be restored. Not even the news hour can update you, because your television doesn't work without power.
With lives at stake and no municipal, provincial or federal assistance in sight, how will you stay connected to terrified loved ones and know what’s coming next? If a disaster happens while you’re on campus, what resources are available?
At BCIT, we have our own Amateur Radio Team. Comprised of employees, aluminialumni, and students, the team has equipment that can communicate locally and globally, all without the internet or use of electricity. They can reach first responders, Red Cross stations and City Hall, families worldwide, as well as alternate Emergency Operations Centers through other amateur clubs.
If you can help with this critical program, don't hesitate to get in touch with BCIT’s Emergency Manager, Sharon Lewis. She can be reached by phone at 604-432-8318 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.