Printer Friendly

''National SOS Radio Network'' proposed by UP Aerospace, based on millions of FRS ''Family Radio Service'' radios already in use plus 675,000 ham radio operators across America.

HARTFORD, Conn. -- In the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, it's become clear that a major contributing factor to the tragic loss of life was the near total breakdown of communication systems. Once electricity, telephone, and cell phone services failed, people were unable to let rescuers know of their dire situations -- and died as a result.

A simple, instant, and virtually zero-cost solution: "Establish a National SOS Radio Network (www.NationalSOS.com)," says Eric Knight, CEO of UP Aerospace, Inc. (www.upaerospace.com). "There are millions of 'Family Radio Service' or 'FRS' radios already in use by the public for camping, boating, and hiking, and there are 675,000 licensed ham radio operators in America -- people renown and prepared for emergency communications. The output frequencies of FRS radios are easily received by the radio gear ham radio operators use daily. That's the magic link in this emergency communication strategy."

Knight went on to say, "The best part of a National SOS Radio Network is that it wouldn't require new laws or any new legislation whatsoever. It could go into effect, today. Once the ham radio community is made aware to listen for the public's emergency broadcasts on an FRS frequency, the national network will be up and running. It's as simple as that."

Knight has been a ham radio operator (KB1EHE) for over 30 years. To help spread the word about his idea to fellow hams, he said he plans to approach the Amateur Radio Relay League ("ARRL", www.arrl.org), the national membership association for amateur radio operators. Knight said, "The ARRL is a wonderful organization. They knit the ham radio community into a network that fosters education, technology experimentation, and emergency preparedness and assistance. With a positive word from the ARRL, the National SOS Radio Network could spring to life immediately."

FRS radios don't require an operator license, can be used by anyone of any age, and are available for as little as $14 at all large retailers, such as WalMart (www.walmart.com). FRS radios can broadcast 2 to 8 miles, depending on terrain. And there are ham radio operators in nearly every community in America. (To see how many ham radio operators are in any city or town, visit www.qrz.com/i/names.html and type in a zip code.)

According to Knight's proposed National SOS Radio Network plan, ham radio operators would rapidly relay the public's emergency needs to local and state authorities -- such as police and fire departments -- as well as to national rescue and relief agencies. As a natural extension of the National SOS Radio Network, all elements of government could also incorporate FRS radios into their communications systems -- for direct, immediate links to the public's emergency situations.

"In times of public crisis, the basic recommendation is for citizens to set their FRS radios on Channel 1 and transmit their emergency needs, and for ham radio operators to tune their receivers to 462.5625 MHz, the frequency that corresponds to FRS Channel 1," said Knight. "Specific operational details will evolve as the National SOS Radio Network gains awareness. To get the ball rolling, we've posted some operational ideas on a Web site we created: www.NationalSOS.com. We look forward to the ARRL's ideas and feedback, too."

"With the simple addition of a low-cost FRS radio to an emergency preparedness kit, a family in distress could literally reach out to the world -- and get the help they need," said Knight. "I can't imagine a more powerful tool that could save so many lives."

"The National SOS Radio Network blends very well with the overall mission of UP Aerospace," Knight added. "It's all about broader public access for a variety of services. We pride ourselves on providing low-cost access to space -- particularly for the nation's college and university students. Likewise, through the National SOS Radio Network, the public can have immediate, life-saving access to emergency and rescue resources. It's truly a public service. We're not looking to profit from it. It feels great to play a role at the grassroots level of America's communities."
COPYRIGHT 2005 Business Wire
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 2005, Gale Group. All rights reserved. Gale Group is a Thomson Corporation Company.

Article Details
Printer friendly Cite/link Email Feedback
Publication:Business Wire
Date:Oct 5, 2005
Words:679
Previous Article:U.S. Marine Corps Selects DRS Technologies for $46 Million Contract to Produce Thermal Binocular Systems; Total Contract Valued at $660 Million with...
Next Article:American Connection Announces New Nonstop Service between Sarasota Bradenton and St. Louis.


Related Articles
LENDING A HAM EMERGENCY AMATEUR RADIO STATION TO DEBUT.
SANTA CLARITA ON STANDBY; LOCAL HAM OPERATORS WILL BE READY TO HELP.
SIMI CLUB JOINS MASS TRANSMIT; RADIO OPERATORS BROADCAST TO HAMS ACROSS THE COUNTRY.
FIELD DAY TO WRAP UP AMATEUR RADIO WEEK.
Field Day: Ham radio operators connect.
John Haygarth, FRS.
John Haygarth, FRS.
HAMS READY IN CASE THINGS GO AWRY FIELD DAY TESTS SET FOR JUNE 24-25.
HAM RADIO JUNKIES KEEP SHARP FOR EMERGENCY.

Terms of use | Copyright © 2017 Farlex, Inc. | Feedback | For webmasters