Ham radio operators host annual field day - KLTV.com-Tyler, Longview, Jacksonville, Texas | ETX News

Ham radio operators host annual field day

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One group of East Texans stays in practice with a form of communication that will function when all others fail. What if all communications nation-wide were out? How would people communicate during a nation-wide or world-wide emergency? Ham radio operators held their 24 hour field day this weekend in an old communication form that is still effective.

"Nationally and internationally we have stations, we try to contact stations around the country , south America, Europe, Canada. We can get emails out and other messages just on ham radio frequencies," says Jim Quinn of the Longview East Texas amateur radio club.

Ham radio goes back to a time long before cell phones and Internet and has come in handy in recent emergency situations.

"The terrorist attack in Boston, ham radio played an important part because there we ham operators there who were able to get information to the emergency preparedness people," says ham operator Dennis Kippa.

And they keep track of their contacts around the world.

"Talking to people all over the world making friendships. Tornadoes, hurricanes , national disasters , terrorist attacks , ham radio was there," Kippa says.

In the event of all communications being out, ham could be the only means of vital information.

"You know in a real bad situation disaster man-made or natural, when you lose power, cell phone its very critical because all we need is a battery , antenna and transmitter and we're good to go. Ham radio will get the message out when no one else can," Quinn says.

Ham radio operators hold the annual 24-hour field day every June.

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