2021 "Whirlwind Boom" Exercise

Gainesville, FL-- The amateur radio communications team of the Florida Baptist Disaster Relief has created a multi-site radio communications exercise designed to bring together volunteers and local authority agencies across northern Florida and beyond, for two hours in the evening of Friday March 19, 2021. Invitations to Amateur Radio Emergency Service (ARES(R)) volunteer groups, county-level emergency managers, state communications experts, and volunteers in a federal radio system have been widely disseminated, including national coverage by the ARRL.

During exercise Whirlwind Boom, volunteers will practice transmitting formal reports about the utility, water, and safety situations in their county, all sent out of simulated disaster areas supposedly struck by a swarm of tornadoes and then worsened by a terrorist bombing of a telephone system, without using cell phones, landlines, or the Internet – only radio transmitters and receivers. Many of the particpants will make communications across hundreds of miles from portable radio gear powered by car batteries or small generators, often using the WINLINK data system, and also using anything else that works -- voice, PSK31, etc.

Direct To The Public Service: As part of the two-hour exercise, simulated survivor messages outbound to friends and family will also be transmitted by WINLINK.

The intensity grows as groups receive secret instructions from exercise management advising them of unexpected handicaps that mimic what happens during disasters – and their tasks become even more complicated. Flexibility and ingenuity rise to the top at such moments in these exercises, which are structured in accordance with Department of Homeland Security training guidelines.

Gordon L. Gibby MD, [email protected], (352) 246 6183

For additional information:

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