Experience and Training

Mountain View ARES/RACES provides opportunities for licensed ham radio operators to increase their skills and knowledge in communication networks and in emergency preparedness.

Network and Field Experience

There are several types of opportunities to gain experience in network communications, outlined below.

SPECS Net - Mountain View ARES/RACES meets every Monday night at 2000 hours on the W6ASH repeaters (145.270 & 224.14 MHz, both with 100 Hz PL) and on 440.800 MHz, for the Southern Peninsula Emergency Communications System (SPECS) net. Subsequently, when prompted, participants go to the Mountain View simplex frequency, 146.535 MHz (or alternate frequency 147.495 MHz), to check-in with Mountain View ARES/RACES and hear local announcements.

Local Monday Night Net Control Operators at 8:00 P.M.- In connection with the SPECS Net above, participants can act as control operator during the check in process, gaining valuable experience in net control. New participants will receive training with the script and check-in roster. Sign-up online at k6mtv.org/net-res.html or send email to Phil Henderson, KF6ZSQ, telephone 650-961-6802. The script for Mountain View specs net and the current roster of participants can be found under "Links/Resources".

CERT drill Practice Drills - During the year field exercises and drills are carried out to sharpen our communications skills and identify areas for improvement. Under the navigation button for "Calendar" on this website, you will see the extent of these opportunities. Some of them are specifically for the ARES/RACES network of ham operators and others involve ARES/RACES and CERT (Community Emergency Response Teams). Drills are held on both the county and city level. In addition, there are opportunities during the year to participate in activities that employ ham radio communications in other cities. In the picture to the left, Rudy Bahr (W6OWI), Bob Fishman (K6FSH), and Hugo Penafiel (KI6VNJ) join other hams at a communication station in Cuesta Park on May 15, 2011 during a city-wide CERT drill.

Classroom Training

Training Session
Debriefing at 1000 Villa Street after CERT drill on April 21, 2012.
Training sessions are offered locally by our Emergency Coordinator and Assistant Emergency Coordinators. They focus on subjects specific to Mountain View, such as message passing in a CERT environment, and operations in the Radio Room. Classes are listed on the Calendar page.

In-depth classes on emergency communication are listed on the Santa Clara County ARES/RACES website. They cover topics including Field Operations, Net Control, Message Passing, Packet, Cross-band Repeating, Antennas, and Shadowing. Start with Introduction to Emergency Communications and next take Fundamentals of Emergency Communications. They will give you a good grounding and are prerequisites for all other county classes.

Finally, online classes on different aspects of emergency preparedness are provided by FEMA and the state of California. Recommended classes are: