Monday, January 28, 2019
R-MA AFJROTC Instructor Stephen Pederson provided emergency communications for Operation Perfect Storm at the Warren County Emergency Operations Center on Saturday, January 19, 2019. MSgt Pederson is a member of the Warren County Fire & Rescue Amateur Radio Emergency Communications Team. This exercise allowed team members to practice deploying to various locations within Warren County and provide emergency data and voice communications to key operation centers handling emergency situations. In the event of a real emergency, phone and internet services would likely be disrupted. These volunteer operators would provide the means of communicating so emergency agencies gain situational awareness throughout the emergency.
MSgt Pederson is a licensed amateur radio instructor currently providing an opportunity for four R-MA students to earn their technician amateur radio license. Additionally, another student, Ethan Mayo '20, is studying for his general license after earning his technician license last May at R-MA. “Moving forward to my general class license will give me the ability to operate on high frequency bands, which opens the ability to talk with other ham operators around the world,” Ethan said.
Ethan added that he loves the many different aspects of amateur radio, and how much there is to learn. “Once you get your license and start operating, that is when the real learning begins,” he commented. “I enjoy when local operators come in and show us their gear because it demonstrates practical applications of HAM radio in our everyday lives.” Currently with his technician license, he can operator both voice and data within a regional area using amateur radio repeaters.
While Pederson obviously enjoys amateur radio and what it enables him to be a part of, he is even more excited to make it available to the students at R-MA. "Bringing amateur radio to R-MA's youth opens up opportunities for them to provide similar actions at home along with new methods of voice and data capabilities worldwide," he observed.