If you receive an ARES deployment call the person calling you will give you details regarding:

The Type of Disaster

The Duration Expected

The Emergency Net Frequency, the Backup Frequency and any additional frequencies.

Who you will report to at the scene, including their agency name and position.

Expected safe routes into the disaster area

In previous discussions we have covered First Aid Kits and 72 Hour Emergency Kits. In addition to those two kits you will need an ARES Go Kit also known as an Emergency Communications kit.

The suggested items for your ARES Go Kit should be:

  • An HT which is appropriate for the Primary Secondary Emergency frequencies that will be used – a 2 meter HT will suffice in most circumstances.
  • Enough batteries for your HT to last at least one full day.
  • Battery charger for your HT
  • A roll up J-pole, Slim Jim will greatly increase your HT’s effective range
  • Alternately a 2 meter Mobile radio or a dual band radio with an adequate power supply or battery capacity for one day
  • 2m / 70cm mag mount antenna
  • Alternately a Yagi or other directional antenna .
  • Extra Coax
  • Ear Phones or Hand Microphone
  • Cell Phone and Charger (Hot spot, Mi-Fi) or Satellite Internet
  • Paper and Pencil / Pens
  • Official ID with Photograph
  • Copy of your FCC License
  • Any FEMA Incident Command System certificates for classes completed
  • Appropriate Clothing for the season. You should bring clothing that will keep you comfortable during night the time temperatures of that season.
  • Extra Food and Water
  • Message forms – Primarily ICS-213 forms
  • Log Book
  • Cash – in small denominations
  • Map of the area
  • Folding Chair
  • Electrical tape and duct tape
  • 50-ft rope
  • 25-ft power cords (2) (110 Vac)
  • Power strip (110 Vac).
  • Extra Connectors and adapters appropriate for your radios. Don’t forget barrel connectors.
  • A repair kit with hand tools, fuses, wires, and other small parts.
  • Soldering Iron and Solder.
  • Coax Seal

Most field operators do not have to have HF capability. That is usually taken care of by the Net Control Station.

Don’t assume commercial power will be available to run your rig & charge your batteries.

If a generator power is available at the site always use a power supply to filter the electricity as voltage spikes from the generator can damage your equipment.

And always be safety conscious when traveling both to and from the disaster site. Flooding, down power lines and other hazards may be present.