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RRL celebrating 16 years of existence

RRL celebrating 16 years of existence

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The Rainbow Radio League Inc. (RRL) celebrated its 16th anniversary on Saturday, January 22, 2011. To mark the occasion several members hiked to the Fenton waterfall and had a cook-out.{{more}} Later that evening, more members gathered for an informal ‘get together’, where, among other things, members reminisced about the launch of the RRL 16 years ago from the top of Mt. St. Andrew.

The RRL was instrumental in setting up a domestic HF/SSB radio network which proved its worth during and following the passage of Hurricane Tomas. The Fancy community was without water, phones and electricity for three days. The only form of communication was HF/SSB radio which was received by operators stationed at the EOC at NEMO. All of the radios which are placed in vulnerable communities were recently retrofitted with renewable energy devices, including solar panel and wind generators, allowing these stations to operate independent of Vinlec. Funds for the retrofit were received from CIDA.

According to Director of the RRL Donald De Riggs (J88CD), the next phase of the development of the domestic radio network will be the ability to communicate wireless using text, and and also to be able to send and receive pictures wireless, which is especially important in verifying reports of damage with pictures. For the past five consecutive years, the RRL has also staged a regional field exercise dubbed “Operation X”, which involves the exchange of radio operators from neighbouring territories. This training exerise affords radio operators the opportunity to know where all the main emergency shelters are located on another island, so that if they have to respond to the communications needs of a nearby territory, previous knowledge of that terrain will make their work much easier.

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